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East Germany

a country study



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East Germany

a country study
Federal Research Division Library of Congress Edited by Stephen R. Burant Research Completed July 1987

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On the cover: Looking across the Karl Marx Bridge to Marx-Engels Square in East Berlin

Third Edition, First Printing, 1988. Copyright ©1988 United States Government as represented by the Secretary of the Army. All rights reserved.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
East Germany : a country study. (DA pam ; 550-155) "Research completed July 1987." Bibliography: p. 381. Includes index. Supt. of Docs. no.: D 101.22:155/987 1. Germany (East) I. Burant, Stephen R., 1954II. Library of Congress. Federal Research Division. III. Series. DD280.6.E22 1988 943.1087 87-600490

Headquarters, Department of the Army DA Pam 550-155

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This volume is one in a continuing series of books now being prepared by the Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress under the Country Studies-Area Handbook Program. The last page of this book lists the other published studies. Most books in the series deal with a particular foreign country, describing and analyzing its political, economic, social, and national security systems and institutions, and examining the interrelationships of those systems and the ways they are shaped by cultural factors. Each study is written by a multidisciplinary team of social scientists. The authors seek to provide a basic understanding of the observed society, striving for a dynamic rather than a static portrayal. Particular attention is devoted to the people who make up the society, their origins, dominant beliefs and values, their common interests and the issues on which they are divided, the nature and extent of their involvement with national institutions, and their attitudes toward each other and toward their social system and political order. The books represent the analysis of the authors and should not be construed as an expression of an official United States government position, policy, or decision. The authors have sought to adhere to accepted standards of scholarly objectivity. Corrections, additions, and suggestions for changes from readers will be welcomed for use in future editions. , ... or ,- .... OOr PY ., 0" Carol Migdalovitz Acting Chief Federal Research Division Library of Congress Washington, D.C. 20540



#008-070-00615-4 . ,Price: $9.00


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The authors wish to acknowledge their use and adaptation of substantial portions of the 1982 edition of East Germany: A Country Study, which was edited by Eugene K. Keefe. The authors of the 1982 edition whose work was used in this edition were as follows: Rosalyn L. Unger, "Historical Setting"; Sallie M. Hicks, "The Society and Its Environment"; Arthur A. Stahnke, "The Economy"; John M. Starrels, "Government and Politics"; William P. Baxter, "National Security"; and Carl H. McMillan, "The Council for Mutual Economic Assistance." The authors are also grateful to E. Wayne Merry of the Department of State, who provided information and insights on East German affairs. Robert E. McKeown and Scott McKnight furnished their expertise on the National People's Army. None of the individuals is responsible for the contents of this edition, however. In addition, the authors express their appreciation to members of the Federal Research Division staff who made significant contributions to the preparation of this study. The authors owe special thanks to Richard Nyrop, who supplied invaluable help and suggestions at all stages of the production process. Thanks go also to Marilyn L. Majeska, who edited the manuscript and oversaw its production, and to editorial assistants Barbara Edgerton and Izella Watson, who helped prepare the manuscript. Invaluable graphics support was provided by David P. Cabitto and his assistants, Sandra K. Cotugno and Kimberly A. Lord. Thanks are owed to Susan M. Lender, who reviewed the map drafts, and Harriett R. Blood, who prepared the final maps. Stanley M. Sciora furnished detailed information on the ranks and insignia of the East German armed forces, in addition to the forces of the other members of the Warsaw Pact. The index was prepared by Editorial Experts, and Andrea T. Merrill performed the final prepublication review. Diann J. Johnson, of the Library of Congress Composing Unit, prepared the camera-ready copy under the supervision of Peggy Pixley. Finally, the authors wish to note the generosity of individuals and private agencies who provided photographs for use in this book. The authors are especially grateful for original work not previously published.



Forew ord ..................................... Acknowledgments .............................. Preface ......................................


Country Profile ................................ xxi Introduction .................................. xxvi 1 Chapter 1. Historical Setting ...................
James Gallagher EARLY HISTORY ..................................... 4 Ancient Period .................................. 4 Medieval Germany ............................... 5 9 The Reformation and the Thirty Years' War ....... The End of the Holy Roman Empire and the Rise of Prussia ...................................... 11 GERMAN CONFEDERATION .......................... 14 Age of Metternich ............................... 14 Liberal Reform Movement ....................... 15 Bismarck and Unification ........................ 16 IMPERIAL GERMANY ................................ 18 Political Consolidation .. ......................... 18 Bismarck's Fall ................................. 19 Industrial Expansion ............................ 20 Wilhelmine Era ................................. 20 World War I ................................... 22 WEIMAR REPUBLIC ... .............................. 25 Weimar Constitution ............................ 25 Problems of Parliamentary Politics .. ............... 27 Stresemann Era ................................ 28 W eimar Culture .. ............................. 29 31 Hitler and the Rise of National Socialism ........... THIRD REICH ........................................ 34 Consolidation of Power .......................... 34 M obilization for W ar .. ......................... 35 Foreign Policy ................................... 36 38 W orld W ar II ............................... Holocaust .. .................................. 40 Internal Resistance .............................. 41


GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC .................. Postwar Government ............................ Integration into the Soviet System . ............... Collectivization and Nationalization of Agriculture and Industry ................................. New Economic System .......................... Ulbricht Versus Dt-tente ......................... Honecker and East-West Rapprochement .......... Two Germanies .................................. Tenth Party Congress .........................

42 42 45 47 48 50 52 53 55


2. The Society and Its Environment .......


Stephen R. Burant PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT . ......................... Boundaries .................................... Topography .................................... PO PU LATIO N ..................................... Historical Trends ............................... Population Structure and Dynamics ............... Settlement Patterns ............................. THE GERMAN PEOPLE ............................... Origins, Language, and Culture .................. The German Question Today: One Nation or Two? ..................................... Minority Groups ............................... SOCIAL STRUCTURE ................................ The Working Class ............................. The Political Elite .............................. The Creative Intelligentsia .. ..................... The Technical Intelligentsia .. .................... INSTITUTIONS AND ORGANS OF SOCIETY .......... T he Fam ily ................................. Mass Organizations ............................. The Educational System ........................ Religion and Religious Organizations ............. D ISSE N T ......................................... 61 61 63 65 66 67 68 70 71 73 82 83 85 90 92 93 95 95 97 103 108 112 117 Becky A. Gates RESOURCE BASE .................................... LABO R FO RCE .................................... ECONOMIC STRUCTURE AND ITS CONTROL MECHANISMS .................................... ECONOMIC POLICY AND PERFORMANCE ........... viii 120 120 122 129

Chapter 3. The Economy ........................

ECONOMIC SECTORS ............................... Mining, Energy, and Industry . .................. Agriculture . ................................. Transportation and Communications .............. BANKING, FINANCE, AND CURRENCY .............. FOREIGN TRADE ................................. THE CONSUMER IN THE EAST GERMAN ECONOMY THE FIVE-YEAR PLAN, 1986-90 ......................


136 136 138 140 144 147 154 157 161 164 164 166 166 167 168 170 171 174 175 177 178 181 182 184 185 186 187 189 193 196 199 202 203 204 211 215 217

Chapter 4. Government and Politics ...............
Susan Larson CONSTITUTIONAL FRAMEWORK ................... Constitution of 1949 ............................ Constitution of 1968 .. .......................... Amendments of 1974 ........................... THE STATE APPARATUS ............................ Council of Ministers ............................ Council of State ............................... Legislature .................................... District and Local Government ................... Judiciary .. ................................... THE SOCIALIST UNITY PARTY OF GERMANY ....... Ideology and Politics . .......................... Organization and Structure ...................... Politburo ................................... Secretariat .................................. Central Committee ............................. District and Local Party Levels .................. Selection and Training Procedures . ............... Party Congresses .............................. Alliance Policy ................................ The Party and the Media ....................... Political Stability, Legitimation, and Succession ..... FOREIGN POLICY ................................... Principles of Foreign Policy ..................... Relations with the Soviet Union .................. Relations with W est Germany ................... Policy Toward the Third World .................. Policy Toward the Industrial West ...............

Chapter 5. National Security ....................
Kathleen Luft THE SOVIET ZONE OF OCCUPATION ............... The Soviet Military Administration .............. Foundation of the People's Police ................

223 224 225


TH E REPUBLIC . .................................. Ministry of the Interior and the Soviet Control Commission ................................ Creation of the National Defense Forces under the M inistry of the Interior . ...................... Creation of the Ministry of State Security .......... U prising ................................... Establishment of the Ministry of Def'ense .......... East Germany Joins the Warsaw Pact ............. C risis C ontrol ............................... The National Security System and the Citizen ...... The National People's Army and the Third World ... ARM ED FORCES .................................. Missions and Roles ............................ Ministry of Defense ............................ Ground Forces ................................ People's Navy ................................. Air Force/Air Defense Force ..................... Border Troops ................................ Uniforms, Decorations, and Insignia ............... Military Traditions arid Ceremonies .............. Conditions of Service ........................... Reserves and Mobilization ...................... The Group of Soviet Forces in Germany .......... PARAMILITARY FORCES .......................... Agencies of the Ministry of the Interior ........... Agencies of the Ministry of State Security ......... The Working-Class Combat Groups .............. Civil Defense ................................. CRIME AND PUNISHMENT ........................... Public Order and Mass Participation . ............. The Legal System .............................. The Court System ............................. Penal Institutions .............................. Penal C ode ................................. Criminal Behavior .............................

227 227 229 229 230 231 232 233 236 244 246 249 250 251 253 256 258 262 266 267 269 270 272 272 273 275 275 277 277 278 278 280 280 281

Appendix A. Tables ............................. Appendix B. The Council for Mutual Economic
A ssistance . .................................
Malinda K. Goodrich


MEMBERSHIP, STRUCTURE, NATURE, AND SCOPE .. 298 M em bership ................................ 298 Structure ................................... 30 1 X

Nature of'Operation . . .. . ... . .. . . .. .35 Comecon Versus the European Economic Community . 306 EVOLUTION........................................ 308 Early Years................................... 308 Rediscovery of Comecon after Stalin's Death..........309 Rapid Growth in Comecon Activity, 1956-63.........309 A Lull and Subsequent Revitalization in the Late 310 1960s...................................... The Comprehensive Program for Socialist Economric( Integration, 1971.............................. 311 The 1980s.................................... 313 COOPERATION UNDER THE 1971 COMPREHENSIVE PROGRAM......................................... .315 Market Relations and Instruments................. .315 Cooperation in Planning.......................... 318 POWER CONFIGURATIONS WITHIN COMECON.........23 The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.............. 323 Mongolia, Cuba, and Vietnam..................... .Q4 Support for D)eveloping Countries.................... 25 TlREND)S AND) PROSPFEC'TS............................ 36

Appendix C. The Warsaw Pact.....................3:31
Karl 'Iheeler Soper TEHE SOVIET ALLIANCE SYSTEM, 1943-55.............. 333 T1he Organization of East European National Units, 1943-45..................................... .333 The Development of'Socialist Armies in Eastern Europe, 1945-55............................. 334 THE WARSAW PACT, 1955-70.......................... 337 East-West Diplomacy and the Formation of the Warsaw Pact................................. .33 7 Early Organizational Structuire and Activities..........339 De-Stalinization and National Communism...........340 The Post-1956 Period............................ .343 THE ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE WARSAW PACT............................................. 351 Political Organization........................... 351 Military Organization . . . . . . . . . . . .. 351 THE WARSAW PACT, 1970-87......................... .359 30 136tente....................................... The Role of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Countries in the Third World............................I6 T1he Solidlarity Crisis.............................:6 T'he End of' Dt~tente............................. .. 5 Xi

The problem of Romania in the 197 0 s and 1980s .... 367
The Renewal of the Alliance .................... 368 SOVIET MILITARY STRATEGY AND THE WARSAW PACT . ........................................... 370 Soviet M ilitary Strategy . ....................... 370 The Role of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Countries in Soviet M ilitary Strategy . ...................... 372 The Reliability of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Armies ..................................... 374 MILITARY TECHNOLOGY AND THE WARSAW PA C T . ......................................... 376 The Weapons and Equipment of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Armies ......................... 376 Coordination of Arms Production ................ 378

Bibliography ................................... 381
G lossary ...................................... 413


........................................ 415

List of Figures
1. German Democratic Republic, 1987 .................. xxvi 2. The Carolingian Empire Divided by the Treaty of Verdun, A .D . 843 ..................................... 6 3. Germany at the Time of the Protestant Reformation .... 12 4. The German Struggle for Unification, 1815-71 . ......... 15 5. The Weimar Republic, 1918-33 ....................... 26 6. Germany's Post-World War I1 Boundaries .............. 43 7. Topography and Drainage .. ......................... 64 8. Transportation System, 1987 ......................... 141 9. Schematic Organization of the Socialist Unity Party of G erm any ..................................... 181 10. Logos of' the Alliance Parties . ........................ 194 11. National People's Army Oath of Allegiance, 1987 ....... 247 12. Deployment of' Malor Ground Units as of 1981 ......... 248 13. Organization of M inistry of' Defense .................. 252 14. Representative Motorized Rifle and Tank Divisions, Early 1980s ............ ............................. 254 15. Organization of Border Troops, 1987 .................. 259 16. Officer Ranks and Insignia, 1987 ..................... 264 17. Enlisted Ranks and Insignia, 1987 . ................... 265 18. Organization of Ministry of the Interior, 1987 .......... 274 19. Organization of Ministry of State Security, 1987 ........ 276



East Germany: A Country Study supersedes the cdition published in 1982. The intervening five years have witnessed several significant changes in the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). Until 1984 Western observers labeled East Germany as the Soviet Union's most loyal ally. That year East Germany entered into a dispute with the Soviet Union over General Secretary Erich Honecker's plan to visit the Federal Repubic of Germanv (West Germany). This dispute led to open disagreements between the East Germans and the Soviets over whether small states should attempt to function as a bridge between East and West. Despite this disagreement, since 1982 East Germany has come to play an increasingly important role as the Soviet Union's "junior partner'" in the Warsaw Pact and as a conduit for Soviet military a,,d foreign policy objectives in the Third World. East Germany also has become an increasingly important regional military power- officially, the country's defense budget has risen over 30 percent since 1980. During these same years, an organized dissident movement, in large measure sponsored by the Lutheran Church, has emerged in an attempt to stem the rising militarization of' East German society. Although this study contains much material from the 1982 edition, it is basically a new book. Like the previous volume, this stud' attempts to present the dominant social, economic, political, and national security aspects of East Germany. Sources of intormation included books and scholarly journals, official reports of governments and international organizations, ftreign and domestic newspapers, and conference papers and proceedings. The authors have emphasized the use of fbreign language sources to a greater extent than in the past. Chapter bibliographies appear at the end of the book, and a brief annotated bibliographic note on sources recommended for further reading appears at the end of each chapter. Measurements are given in the metric system; a conversion table is provided to assist those readers who are unfamiliar with metric measurements (see table 1, Appendix A). A glossary is also included. German words that have become relatively common in English usage and are included in Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary', e.g., autobahn, blitzkrieg, have not been italicized and, if nouns, not capitalized. xiii

The origin of the word German is not known. Julius Caesar, Tacitus, and other Romans wrote about Germania (as the Romans called it) and peoples known as Germani, but the tribal peoples themselves to which the name was applied did not universally use the term. Sometime between the eighth and eleventh centuries A.D., the peoples referred to by others as Germani began refierring to themselves as diutisc, an early torm of the word deutsche, which eventually became translated into English as the word German. The first article of the East German Constitution states: "The German Democratic Republic is a socialist state of workers and peasants." Because confusion often arises with respect to the use of the words socialist and communist, a note of caution is in order concerning their use in this book. Those countries that people in the West generally refer to as communist consistently describe themselves as socialist, making the claim that they are working toward communism, which Karl Marx described as a more advanced historical stage than socialism. In this book, socialism and socialist are generally used in the East German sense as in the Socialist Unity Partv of Germany, and that usage should not be confused or in any way equated with the democratic socialism of several West Europan and other countries.


Table A. Chronology of Important Events
D ate Events

ANCIENT PERIOI) ca. 500 B.C.-A.D1. l100

Germanic tribes settled in Gernania. Roman army ed bv Suevian tribe at Bntle ol the leutobuig Fiirest in A.DI. Q and route d from central Ge'rmania. Romans subseqluentl\ reeonqtiered Germiania west ni the Rhine and Danube rivers and constnlcd lortified f'rontiers. Migration of Germanic peoples. Collapse of western R oman Em pire: last Rominan emnperor. Romulus Auq, us, deposedI in 476 gust liy Germlan artilies led byv( d acar. Fran kishi tribes settled Gaul ( France): Lombilards sitied northern Italy: Aniglo-Saxons settled Britain.

ca. A.D. 100-600(

Merovingian Dyvnasty ((a..500-751) Merovingian kings ruled the Frankish tribes Clov is, Frankish king 486-5 11, ruled ovri Gauil's mixed Gcrianin Roman people. lPepin the Younger. Frankishi king 741 -68. founded Carolingian Emipire in 752. Frankish rule reached from the Spanisht marcs into central Germnanv. The "D oat ion ofI Pepi n- (754-56) established the Papal States. Charles the Greait (Cha remagi Iel) Frankishi king 768-81 4. conquered ILombolard\v in 774. Carolingian Empji re. known ats First Reich, established 8()0: ( :barleniagne rowsnetl Homl% Roman Entperor (HR E) 1y pope. Lou is I (Loauis the Pious) H-RE, 814-401. T reals' oin V'erdu n (84:1) iv~'ided Carol ingian Empire amnong C harlemagne's three graindsons. Ge(rnmanyv France, and M iddll K in gdiom deli neatedl and] imiperial title linked withI Midltdle Kingdom. louis 11 (ILouis the German) ruled east Frankish tribes 843- 76. Cha 1iarifl (Charles the Vat), German king 876-87 and HR E (881). Arnulf of' Carinhia, Geroman king 887-99) and HR E (896). Barbarian invasions weakened Carolingian rule: (h'rmian dchies ofnFranconia, Saxons', Thu riogina.Swabia. and Bavaria rose ito power. Lointis IV'. German King 911(-91 1 . C:onrad I ((Conrail of Francoini a) elected G ermnan king (9 11 -18) following extinction of Carolingian IEm.npirme the east. in Frankish and Saxon nobles elected Henry I (Henry the Fowler) German king (919-36). Subordination of duchies. Otto I (Otto the Great), Ge'rmtn king 936-73, gai nedl contl of fte Middle Kingidomi, andl dici Holy Roman

Ca roli ngi an Empire (752-911)

Saxon D~ynasty (919-10124)


TIable A. -Continued
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Oii 11, F-RI:'973-83. 0Oo

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Table A. -Continued IIi.

Sigisinkind (it li.u\)nurg. 1R Il 1 1,00-[;7, ist.

HRI: I19 -1i' I'ROTF 'SI.NT RE FORMAT\ION AND) REIGIOU7S WVARS 15717-16548) MIartini I'lillict pmt (I Ills iun. -t')\)v lc. NIll Wiilld'rgl. ill F)7 al (11.9gd papall lrn .IR17I71179 Haini Poli-

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(~an ;)))LcatVI~u. princ.

of Stini


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of Hot% IRomsan FnipiI RISEI



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Congress of icim)it ( 1814- I7)) utter Niip))Ionm d)l~t in the Waro Iibueradnn (181:1-15) esiablished ( erman C nhitrai i)n ofI thirS flint, mnairchi~aI si 1)5- 's i )ri)c K I)incri S))) 4 NMeticrniih. . umrian chan) )hl)r and t))rcig))





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)lal iII S







Table A. -Coninued

(hamc er 100- 1909. Moroccan crisis, 1905, in which Ge(rmany intervened in French and British sphe're 4i influence. Thcobald %on Ilet hnanni- Holhseg. chancellor 19019-17. Mi in ican crisis, 1911 , in which GermanN scrnt gun boat it) po rt of Agadi r. New Naval Bill. 19 12. Balkan Wars, 1912- 13, a nationatlist rebllion against Ottoman rule. Assassination iif Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand (J une 28. 1914) in Sarajcvii. Bo.-ia Austria's dleclarat ion of war on Serbia. World War- 1(1914-14) GeCrmat~ns defeated. WEI MAR REPUBIC (0(118-33) Novetmber Revolutiiin, 19M8 Wilhelm II's abdication. Social lDemoc rats proclaimed republic. German armistice (Novetmber 11). Suppression of revolt by Spartacus League in January 1919. Treaty of' Versailles, 1919. Social I )etiirat Friedrich Ebert ele'cted p~resident (919 -25). Right-wintg Kapp Putsch atittiptcil, I120. Co:mttmunist revolts in central (krnany. Ham~burg, and Ruhr district, 1921. O)ccupatiiin of'Ruhr by French and Belgian troops. 1923. Hitler's beer hall putsch attempted in Munich. Gustav Stresemann, ihancclliir August- Novetnber 1923 and fori'ign ttiinister 1923-29, formulated policy' of rapproititnent withI West. Dawes Plan on 124. French- Belgian troops reparations. withdrawn from Ruhr, 1925. Paul von Hinclenburg. World War I army commander, eleted president (1925-304). Locarno treaties, 1925, and Treaty iif Berlin with Soviet Union, 1926. G;ermany Joined League of' Nations, I126. Y'outng Plan on reparations. 1929; Allied t rooips wi thdlrawn frotn R hi neland, I130. D~epressioin Years (1929-33) and cabi net (rises. Heinrich Briining, chancellor 1930-32, government by presidential decree (Article 48 of' the Weimar Constitution). Franz von l'apen, chancellor May-December I132; Hitle's National Socialists won 2:30 Reichstag seats in July 1932 elettioins and ctiecrged as Germany',s st ringt-st poilitical party, Kurt 9 3vim Schleicher. chancellor D~ecember l 2-January 1933. President Hindenburg appiiinted Hitler to chancelloirship on January :30. 1933, TH IRDI R EICH (1933-45) Reichstag fire, February 1933; Hitler demanded presidential emergency decree. Enabling Act (MIarch 1933) atccordled Hitler's cabi net dir aturial p iwcrs. Gehrmany dt'clared one-party Nattional Socialist state. Julv 133. lDeath of


Table A. -Continued
Date s

Hindenburg, August 1934: Hitler combined olbise of president and] chancellor. German rearmnatment. 1935. Rhi neland remil it arzed in 1936 and Berlin-Romec Axis bortncl. At sec ret con ference (N ovetmber 1937) Hitder annlfouned inftenltio jto begin eastward expansion. Austrian Anschiuss (annexation) in March 1938. (Czeehoslovak Sudetenland annexed, October 1938. Gerntanv nccupiedf Czech- populated pro%nes of Bohetmia and ni Moravia. Mardi 1939). Poland invaded in Sepitemtber 1939. 'orld k~ar 11 (1(139-45) GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC (1949)division Yalta Conference (February 1914.5) determined of Gertany into oicupat ion zones. Soviet occu pat ion zone came under poli tical and economic dom inat ion of Soviet U nion: Comrnunist P'art v of Germany, and Social to I~~~~.smre (Inca formn Socialist Unitv Party. of Gerutan in Aptril 0946. ( ;crn;In IDemocratic Republic (East G;ermnany) procelaimtied October 7. 1949: (Germnan Cor~n mnunist. Walter Ulhricht, first secretacy of the Socialist Unity partyv of'CGermany (1949-71 ). Stalinizat ion, 1949-55. East (crtnanv joi netf Corn(Y-on in I.f Wockurs' uprising, ,lune 1953, East Gertnanyv granted formal so\vereignty Its Soviet Union, 19.54. joined Warsaw l'act in V956. Berlin Wall built August 1461, New E"cnnii Syst ctn-conom te refornm prgrm 1963-67. Ul1bricht dlistmissed May 1971: Honecker natmed ness pat% leader, and d6tente negotiations begun. ldeological Abecrenzimt, (dentarcation) between East (hrncans and WeVst G;ertmany. Four Power Agreement ott Berlin. 1971. Basic licatv between East (4-irtnanv and West Gc;ritm (1972) recognized two G ernman states. Adrnission to United Nations, 1973. Tenth Part Congress (1981 ) confirnted East Germanys commitment toi Soviet Uniott.


Country Profile

Formal Name: German Democratic Republic. Short Form: East Germany or GDR Term for Citizens: Formally, Citizens of the GDR; informally, East Germans. Capital: East Berlin (Not recognized by United States, Britain, and France).

Size: Approximately 108,568 square kilometers, including East Berlin. Topography: Lies in northern European plain. Lowlands and low xxi

hills cover coastal and central sections; mountains and hills found in south. Highest point, 1,213 meters. Climate: Maritime in north; gradually changes to continental in center and south. Society Population: Approximately 16,692,000, including East Berlin (July 1986); average annual growth rate, 0 percent. Ethnic Groups: Culturally and linguistically homogeneous; 99.7 percent German; 0.3 percent Sorb (Slavic) and other minorities. Language: Modern German spoken by all people. Regional dialects used at home; Sorbs bilingual. Relhgion: Religious freedom constitutionally guaranteed but active participation very low. About 47 percent Protestant, 7 percent Roman Catholic, 46 percent unaffiliated or other; less than 5 percent of Protestants and 25 percent of Roman Catholics active participants. Education: School system highly centralized with standard curriculum, mandatory attendance through tenth grade, and strong emphasis on vocational training. Technology and science also stressed at secondary level and above. Indoctrination in MarxistLeninist ideology included at all levels. Health and Welfare: Compulsory social insurance program includes free medical care, unemployment compensation, and retirement benefits. Health care good; steady decline in infant mortality rates and incidence of communicable diseases. Unusually high proportion of elderly; pensions low relative to wages.

Gross National Product: Estimated US$163.7 billion in 1984; US$9,800 GNP per capita, with 3 percent growth rate. Economy centrally planned and controlled by communist party. Energy and Mining: Country energy deficient; relies on imported crude oil and natural gas from Soviet Union and domestic lignite. Energy probable major problem for 1990s. Dependent on imports for iron and nonferrous ores. Industry: Manufacturing industries dominate. Machinery important; also chemicals, electronics, metallurgy, textiles, and food processing. xxii

Agriculture: System largely collectivized. Eficient but fliust import grain, vegetables, vegetable oil, and livestock. Foreign Trade: Major trade partners other communist countries. Major exports machinery, optics, and electronics. Major imports crude oil, agricultural products, metals and metal products, and consumer goods. Balance of trade positive in 1984: exports US$25.2 billion; imports US$22.9 billion. Exchange Rate: About 205 GDR marks per US$1 in March 1987. Fiscal Year: Calendar year. Fiscal Policy: Central planning; state almost exclusive owner of means of production.

Transportation and Communications
Railroads: 14,226 kilometers total in 1985, of which 13,777 standard gauge and 293 narrow gauge; 2,523 overhead electrified. In 1984, 3,830 kilometers doubled-tracked. Roads: 120,433 kilometcrs total in 1983; 47,380 kilometers concrete, asphalt, and stone block, of which 18,987 kilometers autobahn and limited-access roads; over 73,000 kilotneters asphalt trcated. gravel, crushed stone, and earth. Inland Waterways: 2,319 kilometers total in 1984. Pipelines: For oil, 1,301 kilometers; for refined products, 500 kilometers; for natural gas, 1,700 kilometers. Ports: Wismar, Rostock, Stralsund, and Sassnitz on Baltic, East Berlin, Eisenhiittenstadt, Magdeburg, and Riesa on inland waterways. Airports: East Berlin-Sch6nefelld, Dresden, Erfurt, Heringsdorf. and Leipzig. Telecommunications: In mid-1980s about 3.6 million telephones. or 21.8 for every 100 inhabitants. System not fully automated.

Government and Politics
Politics: Monopolized by Socialist Unity lParty of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED), the communist party. General Secretary Erich Honecker also chairman of Council of State. Four other parties allowed to exist under SED domination; no opposition allowed. SED politics closely tied to Communist Party of the Soviet Union. xxiii

Government: Constitution of' 1968, substantially amended in 1974. Legislature (People's Chamber) meets infrequently; Council of' State and Council of Ministers principal government bodies. Important posts occupied by high-ranking SED members. Foreign Relations: Diplomatic relations with most countries. Closely allied with Soviet Union in international affairs. Relations with United States since 1974. International Agreements: Active participation in Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon), Warsaw Pact, and United Nations. Signatory to Helsinki Accords and Mutual and Balanced Force Reduction Agreement.

National Security
Armed Forces: National People's Army in 1987 included ground forces (120,000 with 60 percent conscripts); People's Navy (16,300 with 50 percent conscripts), and Air Force/Air Defense Force (39,000 with 38 percent conscripts), respectively. All forces organized under Ministry of Defense. Group of Soviet Forces in Germany numbered about 380,000 men in 20 ground force divisions. Ground Forces: Two tank divisions, four motorized rifle regiments, two surface-to-surface missile brigades, two artillery regiments and one antiaircraft artillery regiment, eight air-defense regiments, one airborne battalion, two antitank divisions, and several support units. Frontier troops (50,000) organized and equipped as motorized rifle battalion. Navy: 1st Flotilla, headquartered in Peenemfinde; 4th Flotilla, based in Rostock-Warnemfinde; 6th Flotilla, located on Rugen Island; Coastal Border Brigade in Rostock; one communications regiment stationed on Rfigen Island; and numerous support units. Air Force/Air Defense Force: In air force, two regiments of lighter aircraft, one reconnaissance squadron, one transport regiment, and three helicopter regiments. In air defense force, six air regiments, seven surface-to-air missile regiments, and two radar regiments. Equipment: Primarily Soviet. Paramilitary: Includes People's Police (12,000), Transport Police (8,500), Felik. Dzierzynski Guard Regiment (7,000) of Ministry of State Security (secret police), Civil Defense officers and noncommissioned officers (3,000), and Working Class Combat Groups (500,000), all of whom receive some military training. xxiv

Police: All police forces centralized under Ministry of the Interior. People's Police includes Alert Units, Municipal Police, Traffic Police, Criminal Police, and Passport Department. Transport Police and Fire Fighters separately organized. also has Foreign Military Treaties: Member of Warsaw Pact; Soviet Union. bilateral defense treaty with the



International boundary District boundary
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F Zure 1. German Democratic Republic, 1987



THE GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC (East Germany) came into existence on October 7, 1949, when the German Economic Commission formed a provisional government in the Soviet zone of occupied Germany. This move occurred in response to the action taken by the United States, Britain, and France, which in 1948 had agreed to unite their respective occupation zones into a West German republic. The division of Germany and the founding of an East German state signified several historical reversals. First, the postwar partition of' Germany represented a return to the country's previous existence as a divided nation. As of 1945, Germans had been united in a single sovereign state fbr only the last seventy-four years. Second, for at least 1,000 years Germans had expanded eastward, conquering territories previously controllcd by Slavs and the Baltic peoples. As part of the settlement ending World War II, Germany lost territories to Poland and the Soviet Union that German rulers had controlled for centuries. Third, the lines of economic, cultural, military, and political influence had historically run from Germany to Eastern Europe and Russia. However, after World War II the Soviet Union imposed on East Germany a brand of Marxism-Leninism developed on Russian soil, the ruling Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED), patterned itself after the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU), and East Germany adopted a governmental system modeled in most respects on that of the Soviet Union. Historically, East Germany has been the Soviet Union's most pliant and loyal ally in Eastern Europe. Lack of international recognition made East Germany dependent on the Soviet Union. Until the Four Power Agreement on Berlin and the signing of the Basic Treaty by the two Germanies in the early 1970s the noncommunist world treated the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) as the "real Germany" and East Germany as nothing more than an artificial state lacking international legitimacy. For a time, this sentiment seems to have been shared by the Soviet leadership as well. In 1954 Viacheslav Molotov, the Soviet representative at the Four Power Foreign Ministers Conference in Berlin, proposed simultaneous elections in both Germanies leading to the creation of a unified German state. If such elections had been held, the SED would have lost power. The presence of West Germany also made the SED regime more dependent on the Soviet Union. Before the xxvii

construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961, 2.5 million East German citizens had walked across the Iorder to live in West Germany. A common language, family ties, and access to West German media left the East Germans much less isolated from West European culture than were their counterparts in Eastern Europe. All these factors tended to impede SED efforts to win popular legitimacy for the Marxist-Leninist regime in East Germany. Without legitimacy, both in the eyes of most of the world and in the eves of its own people, the SED could turn only to the Soviet Union and its allies for support. To ensure Soviet loyalty to the cause of the SED regime, East Germany had to act as Moscow's model ally. East Germany is a one-party state. Although four other parties exist, they have been co-opted by the SED. These four partiesthe Christian Democratic Union, the Liberal Democratic Party of Germany, the Democratic Peasants' Party of Germany, and the National Democratic Party of Germany-have the appearance of power without actually sharing it with the SED. In fact, these four parties act as "transmission belts" for SED decisions and policies to social strata such as the intelligentsia and the peasantry (see Alliance Policy, ch. 4). The operative principle of SED decision making is the Leninist precept of "democratic centralism." According to this principle, free discussion of policy alternatives by all SED members concerned with a given decision is followed by a vote; then the minority submits to the position of the majority. In fact, the SED is a monolithic party in which the lines of decision making run from top to bottom. In East Germany, as in the Soviet Union and the other Marxist-Leninist regimes in Eastern Europe, the communist party is the real locus of power. In mid-1987 Erich Honecker, who took over as first secretary of the SED from Walter Ulbricht in 1971 (the title changed to general secretary in 1976), was the most powerfu1 political figure in East Germany by virtue of his party positio, The top governmental position, that of the chairman of the Coun,"; l of Ministers, had long been occupied by Willi Stoph, who held a posit;-n subordinate to that of Honecker in the SED Politburo. Other leading governmental figures-such as Horst Sindermann, the president of the People's Chamber, and Erich Mielke, the minister of state security-were also members of the Politburo. According to the operative rules of democratic centralism, at any given level government officials carry out decisions made by the party. Stated simply, the government implements and administers policies decided by the SED. Throughout its tenure, the Honecker regime has attempted to ftrm a distinct East German political culture. This undertaking xxviii

involves the inculcation of values, attitudes, and casts of mind that strengthen the citizenry's sense of the regime's legitimacy and authority. Since the early 1970s, for example, the Honecker regime has pursued a policy of Abgrenzung (demarcation- see Glossary) to stress differences in political values, history, and culture between the two Germanies (see The German Question Today: One Nation or Two?, ch. 2). Another important component of political culture is tradition, which justifies the existence of a given polity and gives it a sense of rootedness. Hence, the SED has portrayed itself as the culmination of the German revolutionary tradition, as represented by theoreticians and activists such as Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, and Karl Liebknecht. In an effort to locate its rule within the broader course of German history, the SED depicts itself as the heir to the positive achievements of historical figures such as Martin Luther, Carl von Clausewitz, and Otto von Bismarck. These personages have no connection with Germany's revolutionary past (in fact, Bismarck made every effort to suppress the Social Democratic Party of Germany), and the regime had previously linked them to the discredited ideology of German nationalism. During Honecker's tenure as SED party chief, official East German political culture has evolved to incorporate a significant element of the German national heritage. Over the course of the 1970s and 1980s, East Germany has managed to make itself economically and politically indispensable to the Soviet Union in a variety of ways. Economically, East Germany has demonstrated to the world that a centralized, planned economy modeled on that of the Soviet Union can work (see Economic Policy and Performance, ch. 3). East Germany, for example, boasts the highest standard of living among the socialist countries of Eastern Europe. Its economy is highly developed, and chemicals and machinery constitute its most important products. It was the first among the socialist economies to move into the field of high technology and other intensive forms of production. East Germany is also important to the Soviet Union because it acts as a conduit between the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon) and the European Economic Community (EEC). The origin of this role lies in West Germany's desire to facilitate an eventual German reunification. In the West German view, creating a special economic relationship with East Germany has been one means of achieving this objective. This relationship has eased the transfer of EEC goods to East Germany. From East Germany, the merchandise can be exported to other Comecon countries (see Appendix B). Equally important, the special relationship between the two Germanies has also provided East Germany (and hence xxix

Comecon as a whole) with a much-needed source of hard currency. Throughout its existence, East Germany has proved to be a vital political ally of the Soviet Union. In 1956 the Ulbricht regime roundly condemned the Hungarian revolt. Twelve years later, East German troops, together with those of the Soviet Union, Hungary, Poland, and Bulgaria, marched into Czechoslovakia to quell the reform movement initiated during the Prague Spring. The East Germans also heavily criticized the Solidarity labor union movement in Poland as well as the Polish United Workers Party, which allowed the Solidarity reform movement to persist on Polish soil. The East Germans routinely call for tighter integration of the Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe and for adoption of a unified position on political issues ranging from the United States Strategic Defense Initiative to those of strategy and tactics in the Sovietled world communist movement. Indeed, because East Germany has so often followed the Soviet political lead and has continually tried to persuade other Soviet allies to do so, Western observers describe East Germany as the Soviet Union's "junior partner" within the Warsaw Pact (see Appendix C). East Germany's role as the Soviet Union's junior partner also comes into play in the Third World. Here, East Germany has carved out a role for which it has no peer in the Soviet alliance. East Berlin provides many forms of military and economic assistance, police training, and technical education to selected Third World allies of the Soviet Union (see Policy Toward the Third World, ch. 4). To be sure, in extending this aid East Germany has gained political recognition from other countries as well as access to raw materials. However, in undertaking these activities East Germany acts for the Soviet-dominated socialist community. East German aid serves primarily as a means to extend Soviet influence throughout the world. For most of its existence, East Germany has been a model socialist state in the sense that it has experienced little public dissent. The spontaneous uprising in 1953 against communist rule in East Germany confined itself to the most important industrial centers and did not grip the country in the way that rebellions or reform movements in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, or Poland were able to do. From 1953 to the early 1980s, the SED used both rewards and punishments to keep the East German citizenry politically passive. Because food and rent were subsidized by the government, consumer prices remained low. Thus, East German workers had no economic impetus to follow their Polish counterparts and organize an independent labor union to press for economic reform. The party xxx

also penetrates into most aspects of daily life in East Germany. With no areas of social life free of party domination, it has been difficult for East Germans interested in independent political action to join together, create a program, and attempt to further their common political ends. To repress manifestations of open dissent, forces of the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of State Security combine to form a powerful and pervasive police apparatus. The ultimate guarantors of SED rule in East Germany, however, are the National People's Army (Nationale Volksarmee-NVA) and the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany (GSFG). The NVA unites the border guards and ground, air, air defense, and naval forces into a total strength of 175,000. The NVA is a competent, well-trained force (see Armed Forces, ch. 5). The GSFG numbers over 380,000; it ensures the political quiescence of East German society as well as East Germany's continued membership in the Warsaw Pact. In the 1980s, an independent peace movement had succeeded in establishing itself in East Germany (see Dissent, ch. 2). Several factors explain the emergence and persistence of this form of political dissent. First, the movement revolves around peace and disarmament, issues to which the SED has publicly committed itself. The independent peace movement seeks to compel the East German regime to abide by its own rhetoric; it does not question the fundamental political bases of the Marxist-Leninist regime, such as one-party rule, alliance with the Soviet Union, and a planned economy. Second, from its inception the independent peace movement has been nonviolent. Third, the independent peace movement grew out of the Lutheran Church, an institution that is somewhat independent of the regime. The church offered peace activists throughout the country channels of communication insulated from regime control, an institutional setting in which activists could come together and formulate a program, and a forum in which to air the program for a nationwide constituency. Having gained in strength, the peace movement has proceeded to speak out against the militarization of East German society, environmental pollution, and the development of nuclear power in East Germany. In the 1980s, other events have diminished East Germany's status as a model ally of the Soviet Union. East Germany derives many economic and political benefits from its relations with West Germany. As a result, East Germany's desire to maintain good relations with West Germany has clashed with the Soviet interest in curtailing relations between Warsaw Pact countries and those of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Soviet policy changed because of a general cooling of superpower relations brought on by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the declaration xxxi



of martial law in Poland, and NATO's decision to deploy Pershing intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs) in West Germany. In this public quarrel, Hungary backed the East German position, while Czechoslovakia, East Germany's hardline ally in alliance affairs, together with Poland, supported the Soviet position. The disagreement culminated in 1984 with Honecker's indefinite postponement of a planned trip to West Germany. The SED leadership has also differed with the Soviet Union on the need to emulate the economic and political reform program of CPSU general secretary Mikhail S. Gorbachev. Soviet reforms under Gorbachev envisage the institutionalization of measures to encourage efficiency and innovation in the Soviet planned economy; the introduction of greater openness, reform of the party, and new electoral procedures in the political sphere; and the liberalization of the cultural sphere. The East German response has been generally to maintain that reforms tailored to Soviet conditions are not necessarily applicable to East Germany. The Honecker regime has argued that for years East Germany has been introducing measures to facilitate technological innovation and economic modernization and that East German economic successes prove the viability and vigor of its economic system. If changes are required, the Honecker regime contends that solutions must correspond to local conditions. Politically, the SED leadership has averred that problems such as corruption and immobilisme, which the party reforms advocated by Gorbachev seek to eliminate, do not exist in East Germany. In the realm of culture, the Honecker regime offers the dubious claim that it has already introduced many measures to ease state control of the arts. East Germany's success as the Soviet Union's junior partner provided the foundation for its resistance to Soviet policies in foreign and domestic policy. East German economic performance, partially due to the special relationship it enjoys with the Bonn government but primarily due to indigenous factors, increased East Germany's clout within the Soviet alliance. East Germany's status and power enabled it to pursue policies contrary to Soviet interests, if only to a limited degree. Hence, Soviet-East German friction demonstrates the emergence of East Germany's coming of age as an actor within the socialist interstate system. Like other small states of Eastern Europe, East Germany has achieved a sufficient amount of legitimacy, international recognition, and economic xxxii

power to be able to express occasional public disagreement with the Soviet Union.

From September 7 to September 11, 1987, Honecker paid an unprecedented visit to West Germany. Several factors accounted for this trip, which had been scheduled for 1984 but indefinitely postponed since that time. The prospect of a Soviet-American agreement on IRBMs in Europe had increased the chance for better interGerman relations. West Germany had facilitated the prospect of an accord when Chancellor Helmut Kohl pledged to scrap his country's seventy-two IRBMs, which carry American nuclear warheads. In addition, in 1987 the Soviet Union itself had been seeking better relations with West Germany. Honecker had to obtain Soviet permission for the trip, and Soviet approval may be seen as an effort to reward West Germany for its missile stance and as an attempt to improve relations with that country. From the East German perspective, Honecker's trip marked another effort to obtain West German recognition of East Germany's independent statehood. The practical significance of Honecker's trip was rather limited. East Germany and West Germany signed agreements on scientifictechnical cooperation, environmental protection and nuclear safety, and several measures to ease travel and communications between the two countries. Ultimately, the primary importance of Honecker's visit lay in its reaffirmation of the existence of two independent German states in the heart of Europe.

September 15, 1987

Stephen R. Burant


Chapter 1. Historical Setting





Medieval lower

THE GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC (East Germany) was proclaimed in October 1949 in the post-World War II Soviet occupation zone. The postwar division of Germany had enabled the German communist Walter Ulbricht and his Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei DeutschlandsSED) to consolidate political power and establish a Soviet-style dictatorship. In 1961 the construction of the Berlin Wall effectively terminated the exodus of East Germans to the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), forcing citizens to reconcile themselves to the communist regime. However, Erich Honecker, who succeeded Ulbricht in 1971, negotiated a d~tente that normalized trade and travel relations between the "two Germanies." This detente has resulted in strengthened ties and contacts between East German citizens and their West German neighbors. Germany had not been united as a nation-state until 1871, when authoritarian and mil;taristic Prussia subordinated the traditional German monarchical states and created an empire headed by the Prussian king. Imperial Germany was consolidated politically on the basis of an alliance between landed aristocracy and the financial and industrial bourgeoisie. These groups launched the German pursuit of global politics, establishing overseas colonies and spheres of influence. They succeeded in stirring the nationalistic sentiment of the masses by promises of world power status and in diverting interest in domestic reform by emphasis on foreign policy. Throughout its existence, Imperial Germany competed against Britain, France, and Russia to maintain its place within the European balance of power; this competition culminated in World War I. The Weimar Republic, established in 1918, was the first attempt to institute democratic government in Germany. The Social Democrats proclaimed the republic, and in the throes of military defeat the German people supported a democratic coalition cabinet. The republic's strong presidency, however, reflected the German authoritarian tradition. The Social Democrats soon allied with elements of the old Imperial Army to suppress the radical left, and the party failed to implement social reform. Within two years, the Weimar coalition had lost its parliamentary majority, and in 1925 the German public elected Paul von Hindenburg, the former World War I army commander, to the presidency. During the depression years (1929-33), Adolf Hitler's National Socialists (Nazis) acquired a mass following, emerging in July 1932 as 3

Ea~st Germany: A Country Study Germany's strongest political party. Hindenburg appointed Hitler to the German chancellorship in January 1933, thus enabling the fuhrer to accomplish the "legal revolution" that transformed Germany into a totalitarian dictatorship. The defeat of Hitler's Third Reich in World War II resulted in the division of Germany into the two states that continued to coexist in the late 1980s. The Basic Treaty between East Germany and West Germany, signed in 1972, politically recognized two German states. About the same time, the Honecker regime instituted a policy known as Abgrenzung (demarcation-see Glossary), which emphasized East Germany's distinctiveness as a nation and state. East German citizens continue to be attracted by the democratic politics and material wealth of West Germany, however, and the Honecker regime became increasingly involved in the repression of dissidents who called for political democratization and German reunification.

Early History Ancient Period
The Germanic tribes, which probably originated from a mixture of races in the coastal region of the Baltic Sea, inhabited the greater northern part of the European continent by about 500 B.C. By 100 B.C. they had advanced into the central and southern area of present-day Germany. At this time, there were three major groups: the eastern Germanic peoples living along the Oder and Vistula rivers; the northern Germanic peoples inhabiting the southern part of present-day Scandinavia; and the western Germanic peoples inhabiting the extreme south ofJutland and the area between the North Sea and the Elbe, Rhine, and Main rivers. The Rhine was the temporary boundary line between Germanic and Roman territory after the defeat of the Suevian tribe by Julius Caesar about 70 B.C. The threatening presence of the warlike tribes caused the Romans to pursue a campaign of expansion into Germanic territory. However, the defeat of the provincial governor Varus by Arminius in the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest (A.D. 9) halted Roman colonial policy; Arminius had learned the enemy's strategies during his military training in the Roman armies. This battle brought about the liberation of the greater part of Germany from Roman domination. The Rhine River was once again the boundary line, until the Romans reoccupied territory on its eastern bank and built the limes, a 300-mile fortification, in the first century A.D. The migration of Germanic peoples (Vilkerwanderung) from the second through the sixth century A.D. was a violent period of 4

Historical Setting
change and destruction in which eastern and western tribes left their native lands and settled in newly acquired territories. This period of Germanic history, which later supplied material for heroic epics, contributed to the downfall of the Roman Empire and resulted in a considerable expansion of habitable area for the Germanic peoples. However, with the exception of those established by the Franks and the Anglo-Saxons, the Germanic kingdoms founded during these centuries of migration were of relatively short duration because of their assimilation by the native Roman populations. The final conquest of Roman Gaul by the Frankish tribes in the sixth century became a milestone of European history; it was the Franks who were to become the founders of a civilized German state. Medieval Germany Merovingian Dynasty, ca. 500- 751 In Gaul there was a fusion of Roman and Germanic societies. Clovis, a Salian Frank of the family of Meroveus, became the absolute ruler of a Germanic kingdom of mixed Roman-Germanic population in 486. He consolidated his rule by victories over the Gallo-Romans and all the Frankish tribes, and his successors made other Germanic tribes tributaries of the Merovingian Dynasty. The remaining two and one-half centuries of the dynasty, however, were marked by internecine struggles and a state of decline. During the dynasty, the Franks, following the baptism of Clovis, which inaugurated the alliance between the Frankish kingdom and the Roman Catholic Church, reluctantly began to adopt Christianity. Carolingian Empire, 752-911 Charles the Great (Charlemagne) inherited the Frankish crown in 768. During his reign (768-814), he subdued Bavaria, conquered Lombardy and Saxony, and established his authority in central Italy. By the end of the eighth century, his kingdom, later to become known in German historiography as the First Reich, included the territories of present-day France, parts of Spain and Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Bohemia, Moravia, and the greater part of Italy. Charlemagne, the founder of an empire that was Roman, Christian, and Germanic, was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by the pope in the year 800. The Carolingian Empire was based on an alliance between the emperor, a temporal ruler supported by his military retinue, and the pope of the Roman Catholic Church, who granted spiritual sanction for the imperial mission. Charlemagne and his son, Louis I 5

East Germany: A Country Study

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Figure 2. The Carolingian Empire Divided by the Treaty of Verdun, A.D. 843

(Louis the Pious, 814-40), established centralized authority, anthe and developed a appointed imperial counts asfaGermanr hierarchical iudal structure headed by the emperor. However, the empire of Charlemagne, which, incontrast with the legalistic and abstract Roman concept of government, relied on personal leadership, lasted less than a century. A period of internecine warfare followed the death of Louis. The Treaty of Verdun (843) restored peace and divided the empire among his three sons, geographically and politically delineating the future territories of Germany, France, and the area between them, known as the Middle Kingdom (see fig. 2 ). The eastern Carolingian kings ruled in present-day Germany and Austria, the western Carolingian kings in the area of France. The imperial title, however, came to depend increasingly on rule over the Middle Kingdom 6

Historical Setting
(primarily Italy). By this time, in addition to a geographical and political delineation, a cultural and linguistic split had occurred. The east Frankish tribes still spoke Germanic dialects; the language of the west Frankish tribes, under the influence of Gallo- Latin, had developed into Old French. Meanwhile, the eastern Carolingian kingship was being weakened by the rise of regional duchies, which acquired the trappings of petty kingdoms. This marked the beginning of particularism, in which territorial rulers promoted their own interests and autonomy without regard to the kingdom. These duchies were strengthened when the Carolingian line died out in 911, leaving kings who had no direct line to the throne to assert their power against the territorial dukes.

Saxon Dynasty, 919-1024
The Saxon kings succeeded in establishing a monarchy, which subordinated the territorial dukes and reversed the particularist trend. They founded a new empire, established the principle of hereditary succession, and increased the crown lands, the foundation of monarchical power. The Saxon kings also encouraged eastward expansion and colonization, thereby extending German rule to the Slavic territories of Poland and Bohemia and to Austria. In 962, Otto I (Otto the Great), who had gained control of the Middle Kingdom, was formally crowned Holy Roman Emperor, an event that marked the beginning of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation.

Salian Dynasty, 1024-1125
After the death of Henry II in 1024, the crown passed to the Salians, a Frankish tribe. The German monarchy established itself as a major European power under the Salian emperors. The main Salian accomplishment was the development of a permanent administrative system based on a class of public officials who served the crown. Salian rule was challenged in 1075 by the Investiture Controversy, a papal-imperial struggle in which Pope Gregory VII demanded that the Salian king Henry IV renounce his rights over the German church. The pope further attacked the concept of monarchy by divine right and gained the support of significant elements of the German nobility interested in delimiting imperial absolutism. Henry was forced to journey to Canossa in northern Italy to do penance and receive absolution from the pone. He resumed the practice of lay investiture, however, and had an antipope elected. The papal-imperial struggle resulted in civil war, which ravaged the German lands from 1077 until the issue was resolved by the 7

East Germa,: A Country Study Concordat of Worms in 1122. Control of Italy was lost, and the
crown became dependent on the political support of competing aristocratic factions. Feudalism advanced rapidly as freemen sought protection by swearing allegiance to a lord. The princes, having thereby acquired extensive territories and large military retinues, took over administration within their territories and organized it around an increasing number of castles. Hence the foundations of the territorial particularism characteristic of subsequent German history were laid during the civil wars. The ultimate result was the monarchy's loss of pre-eminence.

Hohenstaufen Dynasty, 1138-1254 During the Hohenstaufen Dynasty, which is generally associated with the Age of Chivalry, castles and courts replaced monasteries as centers of culture, and German medieval literature reached its prime. During this period, Frederick I (Frederick Barbarossa, 1152-90), the embodiment of chivalrous virtues and later a popular figure in romantic literature, succeeded in partly restoring order and stability by proclaiming a general peace, forbidding private wars and feuds, and establishing a feudal social order. He and his son Henry VI (1190-97) restored and extended the empire. Eastward expansion, including conquest of the area that was to be Prussia, was continued during the dynasty, and towns gained in economic strength. After his father's death during the third crusade, Henry continued the Hohenstaufen policy; but he absorbed himself in the continuing struggle between the empire and the papacy. His preoccupation provided opportunity for the German princes to extract far-reaching concessions, such as those put forth in an imperial statute of 1232, which established lay and ecclesiastical princes as virtually independent rulers within their territories. The Great Interregnum (1256-73), a period of anarchy in which the German princes vied for political control, followed the death of Henry's successor, Frederick II. Early Habsburg Dynasty The interregnum ended in 1273 with the election of Rudolf of Habsburg. In the post-interregnum period, German emperors had their power base in the dynastic principalities; the houses of Luxemburg (Bohemia), Wittelsbach (Bavaria), and Habsburg (Austria) alternated on the imperial throne, until the crown returned in the mid-fifteenth century to the Habsburgs, who retained it until the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806. The postinterregnum period was an age of decline during which emperors

The Krimer Bridge in Erfurt, built in 1325

and territorial lords sought primarily to increase their personal possessions and prestige. The Golden Bull of 1356, promulgated by the Luxemburg emperor Charles IV (1355-78), provided the basic constitution of the Holy Roman Empire up to its dissolution. This edict, which established the principle of elective monarchy and confirmed the right of seven prince-electors to choose the emperor, paved the way for the political consolidation of the principalities. By the close of the fifteenth century, Germany consisted of a collection of sovereign states under the control of the Habsburg Dynasty. The Reformation and the Thirty Years' War On the eve of All Saints' Day in 1517, Martin Luther, professor of theology at Wittenberg University in Saxony, posted on the castle church door ninety-five theses that primarily concerned the sale of indulgences-papal grants of mitigation of penalties, including release from purgatory. Luther challenged the secular orientation of the Roman Catholic Church and, more fundamentally, the authority of' pope and church in matters of faith, affirming instead the authority of Holy Scripture and salvation by faith alone. Because of the invention of' movable type, Luther's theses, posted to stimulate debate among academics and clergy, spread rapidly throughout Germany. In 1520, in the midst of the crisis he had created, Luther published three pamphlets calling for religious reformation 9

East Germany: A Country Study
and for the establishment of a German national church, independent of Rome. In 1521 both Rome and the empire banned Luther, who found sanctuary among the German princes. The oppressed German peasantry read into Luther's pamphlet "On the Freedom of a Christian Man" a promise of social reform and, stimulated by the successful struggle of Swiss peasants against the Habsburgs, revolted against the princes in the Great Peasant War of 1525. The war originated in the area of Lake Constance near the Swiss border and spread to central Germany, receiving support from dissatisfied city dwellers and rebellious knights. Luther, a social and political conservative who relied on the nobility for support in his religious revolution, allied himself with the princes in their bloody suppression of the peasant revolt. The Habsburg emperor Charles V (1519-56), who had inherited Spain, the Netherlands, southern Italy, Sicily, and the Austrian lands as patrimony, determined to restore the unity of the German empire, which was divided between Catholics and Protestants and threatened by foreign powers. In 1521 he became engaged in a struggle with Francis I of France, who had resolved to destroy the power of the Habsburgs. During a campaign against Francis I, German mercenary soldiers, most of them Lutheran, sacked Rome in 1527. The capture of Rome restored imperial control of the Middle Kingdom, which had been lost during the Great Interregnum. A staunch Catholic and a firm believer in the tradition of the Holy Roman Empire, Charles assumed responsibility for protecting the Roman Catholic Church in the Lutheran revolt. However, many German princes, hoping to subordinate a German national church to the authority of the sovereign states and thus further consolidate their power, supported Luther's doctrines. They led a reform movement and in 1530 created the Protestant League of Schmalkalden to oppose the emperor. By 1545 all northeastern and northwestern Germany and large parts of southern Germany were Protestant. In 1546 Charles, in an attempt to suppress the growing heresy, declared war on the Protestant princes. The war continued for a number of years until a compromise settlement was reached in the Peace of Augsburg of 1555. In the settlement, which represented a victory for the princes, Lutheranism and Catholicism were granted formal recognition in Germany, and each prince gained the right to decide the religion to be practiced within his state. Religious warfare resumed in the early seventeenth century with the Thirty Years' War (1618-48), a European-wide struggle that devastated Germany and reduced the size and power of the empire (see fig. 3). The Thirty Years' War resulted from a local rebellion. 10

Historical Setting
In 1618 the Habsburg-ruled Bohemian kingdom, opposed to Emperor Matthias's designation of his cousin Ferdinand as future king of Bohemia, elected Frederick of the Palatinate, a German Calvinist, to the throne. In 1620, in an attempt to wrest back control, imperial armies and the Catholic League under General Johann von Tilly defeated the Bohemians at the Battle of the White Mountain near Prague. Neighboring Protestant countries, alarmed by the resulting superior strength of the Catholic League and the possibility of Catholic supremacy in Europe, and France, opposed to the increasing power of the Habsburgs, supported the Protestant German princes, who seized the opportunity to renew their struggle against the emperor. However, by 1627 the imperial armies of Ferdinand 11 (1619-37) and the Catholic League, under the supreme command of General Albrecht von Wallenstein, had defeated the Protestants and secured a foothold in northern Germany. Invading armies from Sweden, which, secretly supported by Catholic France, had come to the defense of the Protestant cause, were defeated in 1635, and the Peace of Prague was signed. In that same year, however, France had openly joined Sweden and declared war on Spain, a traditional ally of Habsburg Austria. The war continued to rage, for the most part on German soil, until the Peace of Westphalia was signed in 1648. The settlement, which signaled the re-emergence of France as the main power on the continent, gave German territories to France and Sweden and extended toleration to Calvinism. The End of the Holy Roman Empire and the Rise of Prussia The devastated and disjointed empire ceased to play a role in European politics after the Thirty Years' War. As a result of the Peace of Westphalia, German principalities became autonomous territorial units, and the power of the Holy Roman Emperor was reduced by German princes in league with France. During this period of disintegration, Prussia (officially so named in 1807) began to develop as a state. In 1618 the Brandenburg lineage of the Hohenzollern Dynasty had acquired possession of the Duchy of Prussia. Through a series of agreements, the Hohenzollerns increased their territory by acquiring a string of principalities in northern Germany. Frederick William the Great Elector (1640-88) established absolute monarchical rule within this territory by making an alliance with the Junkers, the landed aristocracy comprising the officer corps of the Prussian army, who in turn were guaranteed the perpetuation of an agrarian economy based on serfdom. Originally a small and insignificant state, Prussia required a standing army for protection. In order to maintain the army and to ensure 11

East Germany: A Country Study

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Historical Setting,


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East Germany: A Country Study
growth of the state, Prussian rulers introduced centralized taxation and a bureaucratic system of civil officials. Toward the end of the seventeenth century, Prussia began to rise as a European military power. Prussian expansionism led to competition with Habsburg Austria, the other great power within the German empire. The competition culminated, fifty years later, in the Seven Years' War (1756-63). Fought by Prussia under Frederick II (Frederick the Great, 1740-86) against Austria, Russia, and France, the conflict demonstrated the superiority of the disciplined Prussian armies. The French Revolution of 1789, in addition to ending the ancien regime in France, aroused sentiment against absolutism in several European countries. After the revolutionary movement had spread, Prussia did not join in the campaigns aimed at stemming the tide of revolution. After the defeat of the Austro-Russian armies by Napoleon at Austerlitz in 1806, the principalities of southern Germany withdrew from the empire and formed the Confederation of the Rhine (Rheinbund) under the protectorship of France; Emperor Francis II abdicated, and the Holy Roman Empire came to an end. The German states in the confederation began to replace the old order of social distinctions and privileges. Prussia, which was finally forced into war by Napoleon, also met defeat at Jena and Auerstedt. After the defeat, the reform of the Prussian military was undertaken by Gerhard von Scharnhorst, who emphasized the importance of moral incentives, personal courage, and individual responsibility. He also introduced the principle of competition and abandoned the privileges accorded to nobility within the officer corps. Prussian generals in the War of Liberation against Napoleon adopted the tactics of the revolutionary armies of France; the military strategist Carl von Clausewitz, in particular, developed new principles of military strategy in both theory and practice.

German Confederation
Age of Metternich
The Congress of Vienna (1814-15), convened after Napoleon's defeat, established the German Confederation (Deutscher Bund) of thirty-nine monarchical states headed by Austria (see fig. 4). During his period of power (1815-48), Prince Klemens von Metternich, Austria's chancellor, pursued a reactionary policy, and the German states reverted to the old order of social distinctions and privileges. The personification of the European counterrevolution, Metternich advocated the principle of aristocratic legitimacy for the possession of titles and territories and represented 14

Historical Setting

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nationalism and liberalism. The publicist Frederick von Gentz mlim HEJ I\ l popularized Metternich's reactionary ideas and assisted him in developing a system of political censorship that held Austria and part of Germany in intellectual bondage until 1848. Liberal Reform Movement



The movement for liberal reform (including consti~.jtional, parliamentary government, economic freedom, and civil liberties) initiated during the Napoleonic era survived during the so-called Vormi~rz (1815-48), a period of struggle between absolutism and rising liberalism. The July 1830 French revolution incited the German liberal intelligentsia-lower government officials, men of letters, professors, and lawyers-to organize local clubs and assume 15

East Germany: A Cotinly Study
leadership of the reform effort. The liberal intelligentsia, however, did not succeed in overthrowing absolutism in the "revolution of the intellectuals," which took place in March 1848 following the February revolution in France of the same year. Averse to revolutionary violence, the people did not oppose the Prussian troops that marched into Berlin to establish order. In May 1848, shortly after the revolutionary outbreak in Berlin, delegates from all of the German states convened at the Frankfurt Assembly to prepare for the formation of a united and constitutional German nation-state. Controversial issues that had divided Germany for centuries caused disputes among the delegates. To the religious and cultural antagonisms between north and south, Prussia and Austria, Catholics and Protestants, the question concerning the establishment of a "greater Germany," which would include Austria, or a "smaller Germany," which would be under Prussian leadership and exclude Austria, had recently been added. The compromise proposal adopted during the assembly, which provided that only the German provinces of the Habsburg monarchy be included in the new nation-state, caused Austria to recall its delegates. The Frankfurt constitution established Germany as a federal union, which was to be headed by a monarch having an imperial title. The imperial crown was offered to Frederick William IV, King of Prussia, who refused it, stating that he could be elected only by the German princes. After the failure of the Frankfurt Assembly, a disagreement between moderate and radical liberals facilitated the restoration of monarchical conservatism, and the German Confederation was renewed in 1851. In the Treaty of Olmiutz (1851), Prussia agreed to relinquish plans for a German union founded on liberalism under its leadership.

Bismarck and Unification
In 1862 King Wilhelm I of Prussia chose Otto von Bismarck as his chancellor. Of Junker ancestry, Bismarck championed the dominance of the aristocracy in matters of state more than he favored absolutism. He had been elected to the new Prussian parliament in 1848, and from 1851 he served as Prussian delegate to the German Confederation's diet. As Prussian chancellor, Bismarck's main task was to resolve the conflict on the issue of military reform, which had been announced by Wilhelm I in 1861. The reform, intended to expand and strengthen the Prussian army, had led to a bitter conflict between crown and parliament. From 1862 until 1866, the liberal faction within the parliament's Chamber of Deputies, which consisted of representatives from the middle class, voted against budget appropriations required for the 16

Historical Setting military reform. In order to break parliamentary opposition and reaffirm monarchical authority, Bismarck asserted his famous Ltickentheorie (gap theory), which maintained that in cases of conflict between crown and parliament the will of the former must prevail. During the parliamentary struggle of the 1862-66 period, the Lickentheorie enabled the king to expend tax monies on the military without the approval of parliament. The enlarged Prussian army then made it possible for Bismarck to initiate a policy of militarism that was to establish Hohenzollern hegemony within a German nation-state. In June 1866, Bismarck defied Austria, protector of the sovereignty of the German monarchical states, by demanding the annexation of Schleswig-Holstein, then used Austria's rejection as a pretext for war. The Seven Weeks' War, which was won by Prussia, resulted in the dissolution of the German Confederation and the exclusion of Austria from German politics; in 1867 Hungary consequently became a semiautonomous kingdom, and the AustroHungarian Empire was created. In the same year, the constitutional North German Confederation, headed by the Prussian king, was established in Ger many. The south German states-Baden, Wirttemberg, and Bavaria-remained autonomous but promised military allegiance to Prussia in time of war. In an attempt to conciliate parliament, Wilhelm presented the Prussian parliament with the Indemnity Bill, which admitted past budgetary impropriety but requested ex post facto approval. Moderate liberals, impressed by Bismarck's victory over Austria, helped pass the bill, thus retroactively approving the crown's illegal military expenditures of 1862 to 1866. In 1870 Bismarck resumed his Machtpolitik (power politics) by provoking the Franco-Prussian War (1870-71) as the means to incorporate the particularist south German states within a constitutional German nation-state. By releasing to the press the so-called Ems Dispatch-a telegram from Wilhelm in which the king refused to renounce future Hohenzollern claims to the Spanish throneBismarck succeeded in provoking the French and eliciting a declaration of war. Baden, Wurttemberg, and Bavaria joined enthusiastically in the war against Germany's traditional foe. The promised annexation of Alsace-Lorraine, formerly part of the Holy Roman Empire, intensified German nationalist sentiment. Bismarck's major war aim, the voluntary acceptance of the Constitution of the North German Confederation by the southern states, was accomplished by Germany's victory over France. In January 187 1, the Prussian king was proclaimed German emperor. 17

East Germany: A Country Study

Imperial Germany
Political Consolidation
The constitution of 1871 established the Second Reich, a nationstate united on the basis of dualistic constitutionalism. The emperor controlled foreign policy and the combined military forces of the German states. Germany remained a federal union, however, and the aristocratic-monarchical order was preserved in the individual states. The Bundesrat (Federal Council) and the Reichstag (Imperial Parliament) exercised the power of legislation. State rulers were represented in the Bundesrat, whose members held office by princely appointment; the people were represented in the Reichstag, whose members were elected on the basis of universal male suffrage but whose powers were limited by the emperor and the Bundesrat. Six major political parties predominated: Conservative Party, Free Conservative Party, Center Party, National Liberal Party, Progressive Party, and Social Democratic Party of Germany (Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands-SPD). The Conservative Party represented Prussianism, aristocracy, and landed property. The pro-Bismarck Free Conservative Party represented nobles and industrialists. The Center Party, although conservative regarding monarchical authority, was progressive in matters of social reform; it represented Roman Catholic institutions in Germany. The proBismarck National Liberal Party was composed of moderate liberals who advocated constitutionalism, a laissez-faire economic policy, secularization, and material progress. The antiauthoritarian and democratic Progressive Party championed the extension of parliamentary prerogatives. The Marxist SPD was founded in Gotha in 1875 from a fusion of Ferdinand Lassalle's General German Workers' Association (1863), which advocated state socialism, with the Social Democratic Labor Party (1869), headed by August Bebel and Wilhelm Liebknecht. Bismarck's early policies favored the National Liberal Party, which, in coalition with the Free Conservative Party and the Progressive Party, constituted a parliamentary majority in 1871. The federal chancellery published a new commercial code, established a uniform coinage system, and founded imperial banks. The French indemnity payment provided capital for military expansion, railroad construction, and building projects. The Kulturkampf (struggle for civilization) with the Roman Catholic Church resulted in the subordination of church to state and the secularization of the educational system. German financiers and industrialists, citizens of a potentially powerful nation-state who were finally provided with a unified internal market, took ample advantage of 18

Historical Setting
investment opportunity. A speculative boom, characterized by large-scale formation of joint stock companies and unscrupulous investment practices, resulted. The Griinderzeit (era of promotion, 1871-73) ended in the stock market crash of 1873. The crash of 1873 and the subsequent depression signaled the impending dissolution of Bismarck's alliance with the National Liberals. After 1873 the imperial government repudiated liberalism and abandoned free trade. Popular support for German liberalism also waned. Catholic opposition to the Kulturkampf strengthened the Center Party, doubling its popular vote in the Reichstag elections of 1874. In the late 1870s, Bismarck began negotiations with the economically protectionist Conservative Party and Center Party toward the formation of a new government coalition. Conservative electoral gains and National Liberal losses in 1879 brought the Conservative coalition (consisting of the Conservative Party, Center Party, and National Liberal Party) to power. The Reichstag drafted a political program based on protectionism, and an alliance between the landed aristocracy and industrialists consolidated the domestic system. Bismarck's Fall After 1879 Bismarck struggled to defeat the aristocraticmonarchical order. The Military Cabinet and the General Staff, by Bismarck's authorization, were elevated to the status of independent agencies responsible only to the emperor. In the Reichstag, however, the Conservative coalition soon dissolved, and democratic opposition grew in strength. The dynamic industrialization of Germany after 1871 altered the political scene in the 1880s. German liberals abandoned authoritarianism; the Secessionists left the National Liberal Party and in 1884 united with the democratic Progressives, forming the German Free Thought Party. In addition, the SPD emerged as a political force. Bismarck's attempt to regain German liberal support resulted in the revival of Machtpolitik, and soon German nationalistic sentiment was stirred with promises of "world power" status. In the mid-1880s, Germany joined the European powers in the scramble for overseas colonies, simultaneously maintaining its position within the European balance of power. The Bulgarian crisis of 1885-87, a clash between Austrian and Russian interests in the Balkans, provided an opportunity to install a progovernment majority in the Reichstag. When the Reichstag rejected the new armaments bill, Bismarck dissolved that body, called for new elections, and appealed to the German nation, claiming that Germany was threatened by both Austrian and Russian expansionism. 19

East Germany.: A Country Study
Bismarck's policies toward the SPD reflected the proverbial conservative fear of the masses. The Social Democrats had only minor representation in parliament, but the party grew steadily. Bismarck endeavored simultaneously to pacify and eradicate the Social Democrats. As early as 1878, he had introduced antisocialist legislation outlawing all Social Democratic workers' clubs, organizations, assemblies, and trade unions. The Social Democrats remained in parliament, however, and by means of the Sozialdemokrat, a party newspaper published in Switzerland, continued propaganda activities in Germany. After 1881 Bismarck passed comprehensive social legislation; in 1889, however, he presented a new antisocialist law that included a provision for loss of property on suspicion of subversive activities. The new German emperor, Wilhelm II, and the Reichstag opposed the bill; Bismarck, however, remained adamant. In the February 1890 elections, the pro-Bismarck parties were decisively defeated, and Bismarck, prodded by the emperor, resigned.

Industrial Expansion
Imperial Germany industrialized rapidly, and by 1890 it was Europe's foremost industrial power. Employment in the industrial and mining sectors had surpassed employment in agriculture by the turn of the century. Industrial development followed upon a significant growth in population, which increased from 40.9 million in 1870 to 49.5 million in 1890 and 67.8 million in 1914. During this period, Germans migrated to the urban and industrial areas west of the Elbe River, swelling the population of the Rhineland, Westphalia, and Saxony. German industrialization was sparked by the railroad building of the 1840s and the subsequent development of coal mining. Coal mining created new industrial districts, most significantly in the Ruhr and the Saar. Iron ore extraction and iron and steel production accompanied the development of coal mining. Germany's acquisition of Alsace-Lorraine in 1871, an area rich in iron ore, made possible the doubling of steel output between 1880 and 1900. Chemicals, however, occupied first place in German industry. Large salt and potassium deposits encouraged chemical manufacture, including, by the 1880s, pharmaceuticals, dyestuffs, fertilizers, and ammunition. Germany also developed it, 1,ydroelectric power and in the decade before World War I produced 50 percent of the world's electrical equipment.

Wilhelmine Era
The Wilhelmine Era (1890-1914), characterized by Wilhelm II's predilection for military dress and posture, emphasized power. 20

Historical Setting
Increased armaments production, the creation of an ocean fleet, and a vigorous global foreign policy were the means used to buttress absolutism, encourage political unity, and secure social peace. Each of Bismarck's immediate successors-Leo von Caprivi (1890-94), Chlodwig zu Hohenlohe (1894-1900), Bernhard von Billow (1900-1909), and Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg (190917)-pursued a policy of power. These policies, colliding with similar designs in other European capitals, culminated in World War I. Weltpolitik (global politics), which included the establishment of overseas colonies and the development of economic spheres of interest abroad, was championed as the means to satisfy German liberals and to divert popular attention from the demand for social reform under the Hohenlohe ministry. Its supporters feared the Social Democrats in spite of the party's new revisionist policy advocating gradual socialization by parliamentary means. It was during Hohenlohe's chancellorship that Alfred von Tirpitz gained prominence. Founder of the modern German navy, Tirpitz advocated a program of accelerated battleship construction to protect German interests abroad. Although German colonization had ended in the mid- 1880s, the extension of German commercial and industrial interests proceeded apace, and Anglo-German conflicts of interest in Africa and East Asia were frequent. Tirpitz identified Britain as the enemy of German economic progress. He converted the Naval Office into a propaganda center, won the support of German industrialists, and made his naval program the cornerstone of German foreign policy. In 1898 the Reichstag passed the first Naval Bill. As a result, Anglo-German relations deteriorated, and the German government ignored overtures from Britain for the peaceful settlement of colonial issues. Chancellor Billow, a friend and associate of Tirpitz, fomented the formation of a new European alliance by pursuing Weltpolitik on a grand scale. The Supplementary Naval Act of 1900 further strained relations with Britain. Wilhelm II proposed a Baghdad railroad through the Ottoman Empire, a project that threatened British as well as Russian interests in the Balkans. Germany also precipitated the Moroccan crisis of 1905 in which Wilhelm II landed at Tangier and announced German support for Moroccan independence, thereby challenging French predominance in the area. Britain supported the French claim to a sphere of influence in Morocco, however, and both powers forced Germany to back down. In 1907 Britain joined France and Russia in the formal alliance known as the Triple Entente. Billow's chancellorship ended largely in consequence of the Daily Telegraph affair, a contest between emperor and chancellor that 21

East Germany: A Country Study raised the issue of imperial versus Reichstag authority. In November 1908, the London Daily Telegraph published an interview with Wilhelm II quoting seriously offensive remarks made by the emperor regarding Britain and Russia. The German public reacted with alarm. Billow confronted Wilhelm, extracting his promise to consult the Reichstag before issuing public statements. Wilhelm and the Conservative Party, however, subsequently withdrew their support from Billow, and his government collapsed. The militarization of Wilhelmine Germany peaked during the chancellorship of Bethmann-Hollweg from 1909 to 1917. Wilhelm II and Bethmann-Hollweg relied increasingly on the counsel of the German military chiefs; in the Reichstag the political weight shifted to the left as the Conservative Party lost influence. In 1913 the Reichstag passed the new Army Bill, which enlarged the military; the Social Democrats supported the bill, thus indicating the party's decision to support German nationalism and the pursuit of world power status. In 1911 a second Moroccan crisis had heightened tension between Germany and the Triple Entente powers, but the powers nevertheless remained neutral during the Balkan Wars (1912-13), a nationalist rebellion against Ottoman rule. The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, Bosnia, on June 28, 1914, however, proved to be fatal to peace in Europe. Germany encouraged its ally, Austria-Hungary, to declare war on Serbia. By early August, the European powers were engaged in a world war. World War I Declaration of war by Germany resulted largely as the consequence of the Schlieffen Plan-the German military strategy prepared by Alfred von Schlieffen, chief of staff (1892-1906). The plan was based on the idea that Franco-Russian rapprochement made a German two-front war inevitable. Schlieffen's successor, Helmuth von Moltke the Younger (1906-14), firmly committed himself to the plan. Thus Germany's declaration of war on Russia (August 1, 1914), a response to Russian mobilization, was followed immediately by its declaration of war on France (August 3). On August 4, Britain, the third member of the Triple Entente, declared war on Germany. In 1915 Italy, which had been allied with Germany and Austria-Hungary, switched allegiance and joined the Triple Entente powers. The strategy of the Schlieffen Plan conceived a swift victory in the west in which German troops entering France via neutral Belgium and the Netherlands would envelop the French armies, pinning them against the Swiss border. The bulk of the German army 22

Historical Setting would then be free for combat in the east. The plan failed, however, leaving German troops stalemated in trench warfare in France. As a result, Moltke, who had at first altered the Schlieffen Plan and later abandoned it, was relieved of his executive position in September 1914 and was succeeded by Erich von Falkenhayn. Conflict raged between Falkenhayn, who insisted on continued efforts in the west, and the eastern command of Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff, who had achieved significant advances. Bethmann-Hollweg's September Program of 1914 set forth Germany's war aims, which included an expanded Germany (Mitteleuropa) with Belgium and Poland as vassal states and German colonies in Africa. The program reflected a domestic political climate in which the German nation had been virtually unanimous in supporting the decision to go to war; in August 1914, even the Social Democrats voted in favor of war credits in the Reichstag. During the first years of the war, the Reichstag was controlled by the Kriegszielmehrheit (war aims majority), a parliamentary bloc including delegates from the National Liberal Party, Center Party, and Conservative Party. The Kriegszielmehrheit had pressed for an annexationist war aims program; influential German interest groups, such as the Pan-German League, the army and navy, agrarian and industrial associations, and the intelligentsia approved. The SPD alone remained adamantly opposed to all annexationist claims. By the spring of 1915, the war of movement envisioned by the Schlieffen Plan had become a war of position, and political and social disagreements, temporarily forgotten during the upsurge of patriotic feeling, began to reappear. By late summer 1916, chances for a definitive German victory seemed remote, and consequently Bethmann-Hollweg considered peace negotiations. His peace note, however, was rejected by the Triple Entente powers. After the offer to negotiate was rejected, the Army High Command, headed by Chief of Staff Hindenburg and his adjutant general, Ludendorff, demanded passage of the Auxiliary Service Bill calling for the largescale militarization of Germany; the Reichstag passed a considerably weakened version of the bill in early 1917. To cripple operations of the Triple Entente by destroying a sufficient amount of shipping, Germany began unrestricted submarine warfare in January 1917. In the meantime, although the Army High Command increasingly gained control of political decision making, pressure for a peace settlement mounted in the Reichstag. Bethmann-Hollweg attempted to pacify the opposition in the Reichstag with a renewed pledge of democratic reform; and Wilhelm II, reacting to the first workers' strike in Germany, which had been 23

East Germany: A Country Study
sparked by the Russian Revolution of February 1917, issued his famous Ostergeschenk (Easter present) confirming his chancellor's promise of reform. The Social Democrats nevertheless proceeded to issue a manifesto demanding peace without annexations. The Army High Command, however, remained committed to war and annexation. In April and May 1917, Hindenburg and Ludendorff met with Wilhelm II at Kreuznach and persuaded the emperor to draft the Kreuznach claims confirming the goals of the September Program. Bethmann-Hollweg and the Reichstag rejected the Kreuznach claims, however, and in July an interparty Reichstag committee drafted a resolution demanding peace without annexations. Hindenburg and Ludendorff expressed their opposition by resigning their posts. Wilhelm, compelled to choose between BethmannHollweg and the Army High Command, supported Hindenburg and Ludendorff and demanded the chancellor's resignation. Thus Hindenburg and Ludendorff gained de facto control of political decision making. After the Bolshevik Revolution of November 1917, Russia and Germany began peace negotiations. In March 1918, the two countries signed the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk. The defeat of Russia enabled Germany to transfer troops from the eastern to the western front. This advantage was by far outweighed, however, by the United States declaration of war against Germany in April 1917, provoked largely by Germany's continued unrestricted submarine warfare. In order to break the French and British lines before the arrival of the expeditionary force from the United States, Germany launched a large offensive in March 1918 and succeeded in reaching the Marne River. A second large offensive on July 15, aimed at definitively smashing the enemy, failed, and German troops were subsequently pressed back along their extended front. In the early fall of 1918, the Army High Command conceded and called for an armistice. The armistice, signed on November 11 after the Social Democrats had proclaimed a republic and formed a government, was later repudiated by the military, which, together with the extreme right, created the myth of the "stab in the back" that blamed defeat in World War I on left-wing elements. German military casualties in World War I amounted to 1.6 million dead, more than 4 million wounded, and more than 200,000 missing in action. The Treaty of Versailles, which was signed in June 1919, called for German disarmament. As a result of the treaty, the Rhineland was demilitarized and occupied by the western Allied powers for fifteen years; Germany ceded Alsace-Lorraine, the Polish Corridor, northern Schleswig-Holstein, and all overseas colonies; and the Allied Reparations Commission was established and charged with 24

Historical Setting
deciding the total war damage payments to be demanded of Germany. The Treaty of Versailles also included the "war guilt clause," which, by its implicit suggestion of German responsibility for World War I, evoked generalized German contempt for the treaty. Historians debate Germany's responsibility for World War I; some claim that Germany's entry into the war was accidental and defensive, others that the war was the result of German imperialism. It remains to be shown, in either case, that Wilhelmine aspirations were indeed qualitatively different from the preWorld War I imperialist ambitions of Britain or France.

Weimar Republic Weimar Constitution
The Weimar Republic, proclaimed on November 9, 1918, was born in the throes of military defeat and social revolution (see fig. 5). On November 3, mutiny had broken out among naval squadrons stationed at Kiel. Workers had joined the revolt, which had quickly spread to other ports and to cities in northern, central, and southern Germany, finally reaching Berlin on November 9. Largely as a result of the November Revolution, Prince Max von Baden, the German chancellor, announced the abdication of the emperor. Following the abdication, the Social Democrats in the Reichstag gained control of the government; they proclaimed the republic, formed a provisional cabinet, and organized the National Assembly. Another revolt instigated in Berlin by the Spartacus League, a group of left-wing extremists, was crushed by the army in January 1919. In February the National Assembly elected Social Democrat Friedrich Ebert to the presidency and drafted a constitution. The Weimar constitution of 1919 established a federal republic consisting of nineteen states (Linder). The republic was headed by a president who was to be elected by popular direct ballot for a seven-year term and who could be re-elected. The president appointed the chancellor and, based on the chancellor's nominations, also appointed the cabinet ministers. He retained authority to dismiss the cabinet, dissolve the Reichstag, and veto legislation. The legislative powers of the Reichstag were further weakened by the provision for presidential recourse to popular plebiscite. Article 48, the so-called emergency clause, accorded the president dictatorial rights to intervene in the territorial states for the purpose of enforcing constitutional and federal laws and/or to restore public order. The constitution provided for the Reichstag and the Reichsrat (council of German states' representatives). The Reichstag, elected 25

East Germany. A Country Study




:is~. ' I


-S t-)








40 J~,q-





Historical Setting
by popular suffrage, voted on legislation introduced by the chancellor. By a vote of no confidence, it could call for the dismissal of both chancellor and cabinet ministers. The Reichsrat replaced the Bundesrat (see Political Consolidation, this ch.). Established to guarantee state government supervision of national legislation, it was nevertheless subordinated to national control in that members of the Reichstag cabinet convened and presided over Reichsrat sessions. The Reichstag was empowered to override Reichsrat opposition with a two-thirds majority vote. The powers accorded to the president reflected the nineteenth century's conservative and liberal predilection for monarchical rule. But democratization of suffrage strengthened the Reichstag, and in theory both the military and the bureaucracy were subordinated to cabinet control. Thus the constitution established a republic based on a combination of conservative and democratic elements. It guaranteed civil liberties, but provisions for social legislation, including land reform and limited nationalization, were never implemented. The constitution adopted the colors black, red, and gold-the colors of the Holy Roman Empire-to replace the black, white, and red of Imperial Germany. The colors adopted by the constitution symbolized the idea of a "greater Germany," which was to include Austria; but the incorporation of Austria into the republic was opposed by the Allies, and Austria remained a separate state. Problems of Parliamentary Politics The Weimar Republic represented a compromise: German conservatives and industrialists had transferred power to the Social Democrats to avert a possible Bolshevik-style takeover; the Social Democrats, in turn, had allied with demobilized officers of the Imperial Army to suppress the revolution. The January 1919 National Assembly elections produced the Weimar coalition, which included the SPD, the German Democratic Party (Deutsche Demokratische Partei-DDP), and the Center Party. The percentage of the vote gained by the coalition (76.2 percent; 38 percent for the SPD) suggested broad popular support for the republic. The antirepublican, conservative German National People's Party (Deutschnationale Volkspartei-DNVP) and the German People's Party (Deutsche Volkspartei-DVP) combined received 10.3 percent of the vote. The Independent Social Democratic Party of Germany, which had split from the SPD during the war, won 8 percent of the vote. But the lifespan of the Weimar coalition was brief, and the Weimar political system, which was achieving gains for both extreme left and extreme right, soon became radicalized. 27

East Germany: A Country Study
The future of the Weimar Republic was shaped during the critical year separating the National Assembly elections and the June 1920 Reichstag elections. German public opinion was influenced by three major developments. First, the Treaty of Versailles shocked German nationalists and seriously damaged the republic's prestige. The treaty's provisions for Allied occupation of the Rhineland and reparations were considered unduly harsh. Second, German workers were disappointed by the failure to achieve social reform. Third, the Kapp Putsch of March 1920, an attempted coup staged by disaffected right-wing army officers, provided impetus for the political radicalization of rightist and leftist elements. In the June 1920 elections, the Weimar coalition lost its majority. An increase in votes (28.9 percent) for the DNVP and the DVP reflected German middle-class disillusionment with democracy. SPD strength fell to 21.7 percent as the German working class defected to the extreme left. The Independent Social Democratic Party of Germany split as most members joined the Communist Party of Germany (Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands-KPD), formed in December 1918, and the remainder reunited with the SPD. The Weimar coalition never regained its majority. After 1920 the era of unpopular minority cabinets began. Postwar inflation and Allied demands for reparations contributed to political instability. In January 1923, French and Belgian troops occupied the highly industrialized Ruhr district as a protest against German defaults in reparations payment. The Weimar government responded by calling upon the Ruhr population to stop all industrial activity. In the summer of 1923, President Ebert asked Gustav Stresemann, the DVP chairman, to form a new cabinet coalition to resolve the crisis.

Stresemann Era
Stresemann typified the Weimar Vernunftrepublikaner(commonsense republican); a former National Liberal and annexationist, he supported the republic for pragmatic reasons. During his brief chancellorship (August-November 1923), he headed the "great coalition," an alliance that included the SPD, Center Party, DDP, and DVP. After his chancellorship ended because of combined opposition from the right and left, Stresemann served as German foreign minister until his death in 1929. The Stresemann era (1923-29) was a period of rapprochement with the West during which passive resistance in the Ruhr was ended. As foreign minister, Stresemann pursued negotiation rather than confrontation with the Allies. His policy, however, was strongly opposed by members of both the DNVP and the KPD. 28

Historical Setting
In 1924 the German government adopted a plan for German economic recovery prepared by the American financier Charles G. Dawes. The Dawes Plan attempted to coordinate German reparations payments with a program of economic recovery whereby Germany was required to make only limited payments until 1929. To assist with the recovery, the Reichsbank was founded, and foreign credit, mainly from the United States, was filtered into Germany. As a result, between 1924 and 1929 German industry and commerce made unprecedented progress, and both the standard of living and real wages rose steadily. The Dawes Plan also provided for the withdrawal of French and Belgian troops from the Ruhr district. In 1925 President Ebert died, and the German people elected their national hero, Paul von Hindenburg, who supported the policies inaugurated by Stresemann until 1929, the year of Stresemann's death. The Locarno treaties, signed in 1925 by Germany and the Allies, were part of Stresemann's attempt at rapprochement with the West. A prerequisite for Germany's admission to the League of Nations in 1926, the treaties accepted the demilitarization of the Rhineland and guaranteed the western frontier as defined by the Treaty of Versailles. Both Britain and Germany preferred to leave the question of the eastern frontier open. In 1925-26 the Allies withdrew their troops from the right bank of the Rhine. In 1926 the German and Soviet governments signed the Treaty of Berlin, which pledged Germany and the Soviet Union to neutrality in the event of an attack on either country by foreign powers. The Locarno treaties, the Treaty of Berlin, and Germany's membership in the League of Nations were the successes that earned Stresemann world renown. The Young Plan of 1929, which was also introduced during the Stresemann era, formulated the final reparations settlement. Germany agreed to a 59-year schedule of payments averaging approximately 2 billion Deutsche marks annually. The Bank of International Settlement was established to facilitate transactions. The Allies, in turn, promised to complete the evacuation of the Rhineland.

Weimar Culture
The Weimar Republic was the first attempt to establish constitutional liberal democratic government in Germany. The republic's name symbolically evoked memories of the German writerJohann Wolfgang von Goethe, who had spent a number of years at the court of Weimar, and of the nation's humanistic cultural traditions. Goethe's Weimar was contrasted with the Prussian Germany of authoritarianism, military swagger, and imperialism.


East Germany: A Country Study
Many Germans, however, remained attached to the old order and lacked a genuine commitment to republican ideals. Both the Social Democrats and those who harkened back to the Prussian past were opposed by the radical opposition, whose program included revolutionary tactics. German culture under the republic reflected the ideological diversity of a politically fragmented society. The Warburg Library, the Psychoanalytic Institute, the German Academy for Politics, and the Marxist Institute for Social Research, founded soon after World War I, were dedicated to the critical analysis of political and social values. These institutions reflected the desire of Weimar intellectuals to reconsider the German past. Eckart Kehr's Schlachtflottenbau und Parteipolitik(Battleship Construction and Party Politics), published in 1930, pursued the same critical objective, revealing the domestic socioeconomic basis for Imperial Germany's naval policy. The cult of the hero survived in the poet Stefan George's literary society, known as the George Circle, which, in addition to publishing "elevated" poetry and translating the classics, displayed its aristocratic mentality in biographies about great historical figures. Ernst Kantorowicz's Emperor Frederick II, a biography of the thirteenth-century Hohenstaufen ruler, received widespread public acclaim. Kantorowicz, a former Prussianarmy officer, describes the Weimar Republic as the triumph of mediocrity, and in his preface he speaks of Germany's secret longing for its emperors and heroes. In his biography, he mythically portrays Frederick II as a superman who defies all authority and is voraciously eager to taste all of life. Many German artists during this period were part of the expressionist movement. Both literary and visual expressionism were primarily cnrcerned with representing the immediate present. In contrast to the strict form in the writings of the George Circle, literary expressionism consciously simplified, abbreviated, and distorted sentence structures to give expression to passionate inner feeling. A reaction to inhuman social conditions and the horrors of World War I, expressionist writing called for a new man and a new world that would be united in brotherly love. The outsider, as a victim of society, became the hero. Writers whose works represent this kind of reaction include Georg Heym and Fritz von Unruh. Although some writers, for example, Kurt Hiller and Heinrich Mann, became politically active extremists, expressionists were, for the most part, solely literary revolutionaries. Inner experience is also emphasized in the bold and symbolic colors and distorted forms found in the drawings and paintings of expressionist artists such as Franz Marc and Emil Nolde. In his grotesque figures and 30

Historical Setting
suggestive juxtapositions, the postwar artist George Grosz satirized the materialistic pseudoculture of the bourgeoisie. The dilemma of the Weimar intellectual, who had to choose between the conservative past and the liberal present, can be approached through the novelist Thomas Mann. A monarchist before World War I, a commonsense republican after the war, Mann finally made a genuine commitment to the republic in the mid-1920s. In 1924 he published DerZauberberg (The Magic Mountain), a novel that describes Hans Castorp's education through life. While visiting a tubercular cousin in a Swiss sanatorium, the protagonist contracts the disease himself and stays for seven years. The sanatorium is a cross section of European civilization in which Castorp is exposed to a variety of political ideologies, including enlightened liberalism. Significantly Castorp (and the conservative Mann) cannot choose liberalism. Love, not reason, the novel concludes, will provide the basis for social reconciliation. After 1929 national socialism offered a different social and political solution. The Nazi party took full advantage of political instability and economic depression, launched a large-scale propaganda campaign, and won a mass following. Nazi ideology, authoritarian but promising social revolution, appealed particularly to German youth, who longed for the restoration of order.

Hitler and the Rise of National Socialism
Adolf Hitler was born in the Austrian border town of Braunau am Inn in 1889. At the age of seventeen, Hitler was refused admission to the Vienna Art Academy because of his lack of talent. He remained in Vienna, where he led a Bohemian existence, acquiring an ideology based on belief in the Germanic master race and a form of anti-Semitism that blamed social and political crises on Jewish subversive activities. Hitler remained in Vienna until 1913, when he moved to Munich to avoid the draft. After serving in the German army during World War I, he joined the right-wing Bavarian German Workers' Party in 1919. The following year, the party changed its name to the National Socialist German Workers' Party (National-Sozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei-NSDAP); the members were known as Nazis, a term derived from the German pronunciation of "National." In 1921 Hitler assumed leadership of the NSDAP. As ffihrer (leader) of the NSDAP, Hitler reorganized the party on a monolithic basis and encouraged the assimilation of other radical right-wing groups. He was assisted by Ernst R6hm, Dietrich Eckart, and Alfred Rosenberg. R6hm's Stormtroopers (Sturmabteilung-SA) constituted Hitler's private army. Eckar- published the 31

East Germany: A Country Study
V6lkischer Beobachier, the official party newspaper. Rosenberg, the party ideologist, developed slogans and symbols and conceived the use of the swastika, the future emblem of the Third Reich. Under Hitler's leadership, the NSDAP denounced the republic and the "November criminals" who had signed the Treaty of Versailles. The postwar economic slump won the party a following among unemployed ex-soldiers, the lower middle class, and small farmers; in 1923 membership totaled 55,000. General Ludendorff supported the former corporal in his beer hall putsch of November 1923, an attempt to overthrow the Bavarian government. The putsch failed, and Hitler was imprisoned until December 1924. In prison he wrote Mein Kampf, the Nazi ideological tract. After the failure of the putsch, Hitler chose "legal revolution" as the road to power and then pursued a double goal. First, the NSDAP employed propaganda to create a national mass party capable of seizing power through electoral successes. Second, the party developed a bureaucratic structure and prepared to assume the functions of state. Beginning in 1924, numerous Nazi cells sprang up in parts of northern Germany; the northern groups were consolidated with the Munich-Bavarian party core. The NSDAP bureaucracy was established in 1926. The SA, which was subordinated to centralized political control, functioned primarily to train party members and to supervise the Hitler Youth (Hitlerjugend-HJ). Postwar youth and university students increasingly formed the core of the NSDAP membership. In 1927 the NSDAP organized the first Nuremberg party congress, a mass political rally. By 1928 party membership exceeded 100,000; the Nazis, however, polled only 2.6 percent of the vote in the May Reichstag elections. The NSDAP, a mere splinter party in 1928, began its rise to power the following year. The original breakthrough was the July 1929 alliance with the DNVP. Alfred Hugenberg, a DNVP leader, arranged the alliance for the purpose of launching a plebiscite against the Young Plan on the issue of reparations. Hugenberg, owner of a large chain of news media enterprises, considered the spellbinding Hitler to be a useful drummer who would attract the masses. The DNVP-NSDAP union brought the NSDAP within the framework of a socially influential coalition of the antirepublican right. As a result, Hitler's party acquired respectability and access to financial resources from a number of industrialists. Had it not been for the economic depression of 1929, however, Hitler might have faded out of Germany's history. The depression greatly augmented political and social instability. By 1932 German unemployment figures had reached more than 6 million out of a population of 65 million. The situation caused the middle class, 32

Historical Setting
which had not fully recovered from the inflation of 1923, to lose faith in the economic system and in its future. The NSDAP exploited the situation, making an intensified appeal to the unemployed middle-class urban and rural masses and blaming the Treaty of Versailles and reparations for the developing crisis. Nazi propaganda attacked the Weimar political "system," the "November criminals," Marxists, internationalists, and Jews. In addition to promising a solution to the economic crisis, the NSDAP offered the German people a sense of national pride, the acquisition of lebensraum (living space), and the restoration of order. The racist concept of the "superior" Aryan requiring defense against foreign intrusion, i.e., Jews, was also proclaimed. Frequent elections had to be held because no workable majority was possible in the Reichstag; the economic depression was causing an increase in votes only for the extremist parties. The cabinet crises of the depression years led to increased experimentation with authoritarian methods of rule. The most important consequence of this experimentation was President Hindenburg's appointment of chancellors whose politics favored the right. In the spring of 1930, Hindenburg appointed Heinrich Briining as chancellor. The NSDAP won 18.3 percent of the vote that year and emerged as the second strongest Reichstag party (following the SPD, which had 38.2 percent). The KPD polled 13.1 percent of the vote. In 1931 the DNVP, which was devastatingly defeated in the elections, joined with the NSDAP to form the Harzburg Front coalition against Bruining's government. Under orders from Moscow, the KPD cooperated with the NSDAP in an attempt to destroy the Weimar Republic. Under attack from both sides, the Brfining government survived only until June 1932. In July 1932, the NSDAP more than doubled its 1930 Reichstag representation and became the strongest German party. In the November 1932 election, however, NSDAP popularity declined as the economic depression began to abate. The KPD increased its representation in this election. In the same year, a group of conservative and antirepublican aristocrats and industrialists, thinking they could use to their advantage the wave of discontent that had contributed to Hitler's rise in popularity, supported the NSDAP with funds. Meanwhile, Briining's successor, Franz von Papen, a strong authoritarian who wished to establish a corporate state under aristocratic leadership and thus circumvent the problems of parliamentary politics, sought NSDAP-DNVP support in May 1932. He, however, met with Hitler's refusal. After the electoral success of the NSDAP in the July 1932 elections, Hitler also refused Papen's offer to join the cabinet as vice chancellor. 33

East Germany: A Country Study
General Kurt von Schleicher, having forced Papen's resignation, was appointed chancellor in December 1932. Unable to form a coalition in the Reichstag, Schleicher also offered Hitler the vice chancellorship, but the fuhrer was determined to hold out for the highest government post. When Schleicher was dismissed, he and Papen, intriguing separately, prevailed upon President Hindenburg to appoint Hitler chancellor of a coalition government. On January 30, 1933, by entirely legal means, Adolf Hitler became chancellor of the republic.

Third Reich Consolidation of Power
Hitler proceeded to transform the Weimar Republic into a totalitarian dictatorship. The National Socialist "revolution" was accomplished in gradual steps by using legal and semilegal methods

as well as terror. The NSDAP endeavored initially to establish
National Socialist hegemony within the state. In this process, the old conservative-nationalist elite, while partially preserved, was subordinated to Nazi control. The state bureaucratic apparatus and the army, however, were retained, and the country's economic and social structure remained largely unchanged. Because the government did not have a parliamentary majority, Hindenburg called for the dissolution of the Reichstag and set March 5 as the date for new elections. A week before election day, the Reichstag building was destroyed by fire. The Nazis, who presumably had set fire to the building themselves, blamed the fire on the communists, and on February 28 the president, invoking Article 48 of the constitution, signed a decree that enabled the Nazis to quash the political opposition. Authorized by the decree, the SA arrested socialist and liberal leaders as well as a large number of communists. State governments lacking a National Socialist majority were dissolved and subordinated to control by the central government. In March Hitler presented the Enabling Act to the Reichstag. The Reichstag, purged and intimidated, passed the act by a vote of 441 to 84, thereby according Hitler's cabinet dictatorial powers for a period of 4 years. Hitler used the Enabling Act to implement Gleichschaltung(forced political coordination), the policy of subordinating all independent institutions and organizations to Nazi control. The state bureaucracy and the judiciary were purged of "non-Aryans," and all members were obliged to swear an oath of personal loyalty to the fUhrer. The Secret State Police (Geheime Staatspolizei-Gestapo) was created, and the People's Tribunal was established to deal with 34

Historical Setting
cases of treason. State governments were dismissed and replaced by Reich governors directly responsible to Hitler. Trade unions were dissolved, political parties other than NSDAP were disbanded, and the NSDAP was purged of its social-revolutionary wing. In July Germany was legally declared a National Socialist one-party state. After Hindenburg's death in August 1934, Hitler promulgated a law that combined the offices of the president and the chancellor. The law violated the Enabling Act, but it was suLscquently sanctioned by national plebiscite. Thus, in the pseudolegal fashion characteristic of Nazi tactics, Hitler established himself as German fiuhrer. The army swore an oath of allegiance pledging unconditional obedience to him, and Heinrich Himmler's Guard Detachment (Schutzstaffel-SS) replaced the SA as Hitler's private army. Nazi leadership was drawn from the lower-middle class and, according to some estimates, came from non-Prussian regions such as Bavaria. Joseph Goebbels, the minister of propaganda, consolidated the National Socialist power and elite structure. Goebbels formulated the concept of"total propaganda" and established the Reich Cultural Chamber. The chamber extended Gleichschaltung to include the educational system, the media, and all cultural institutions. Germanic customs were revived, the worship of Germanic gods was encouraged, and ambiguous and exaggerated vocabulary was introduced into the language to promote Nazi ideology. Hitler's Mein Kampf and other racist-imperialist literature were also widely distributed. In its propaganda campaign, the NSDAP focused primarily on "gathering in" the German youth.

Mobilization for War
National socialism added to authoritarianism the politically charismatic idea of the "movement," i.e., the Third Reich's mobilization for war. To that end, Nazi economic policy emphasized accelerated rearmament and autarchy, and the German chemical industry developed artificial rubber, plastics, synthetic textiles, and other substitute products to make the Third Reich independent of imported raw materials. Because the NSDAP had won the support of German industrialists, private ownership, although subordinated to party control, was left intact. The government also began an extensive public works program and expanded and improved the transportation system. The Four-Year Plan, adopted in 1936, resulted in a conflict between Hermann G6ring's nationalist approach, which aimed at removing Germany from the international economy through 35

East Germany. A Country Study
industrial self-sufficiency, and the internationalist approach to industry advocated by Hjalmar Schacht, minister of economic affairs. G6ring, at the time a minister without portfolio, prevailed with his "guns versus butter" slogan. The Four-Year Plan Office assumed responsibility for developing production quotas and market guidelines. Major industrial enterprises, particularly war mat6riel producers such as Krupp (steel and armaments), I. G. Farben (chemicals), and Siemens (shipbuilding), were expanded. The enlarged war materiel industry significantly reduced unemployment. Owing to the preferential wage scales offered by war materiel producers, large numbers of Germans abandoned agriculture to seek jobs in industry. During World War II, the Nazi regime instituted a labor draft and also used disenfranchised foreign and slave labor to supply the growing needs of the war economy. A most significant feature of the Third Reich was the formal institutionalization of a system of terror made possible by the SS. In the mid-1930s, Himmler's SS assumed control over both the Gestapo and the Nazi concentration camp system, thereby solidifying Hitler's totalitarian control (see Holocaust, this ch.). Gestapo arrests, which had focused originally on communists and socialists, were extended to other social groups, most particularly to Jews. The concentration camps, which were filled with the Third Reich's undesirable elements during mobilization, were to supply forced labor for SS-run projects and industries during World War II. Meanwhile, the attention of the German masses, for whom there had been no real social revolution, was diverted ideologically toward the goal of lebensraum, which was to be achieved by coercion and military conquest. By the late 1930s, mesmerized Germans, roaring their approval in mass demonstrations, were ready to follow their fihrer to war.

Foreign Policy
As ffihrer, Hitler directed foreign policy. In 1933 he withdrew Germany from the League of Nations, aiming to destroy the league's collective security system, and began German rearmament in preparation for eastward expansion. Hitler's demands, carefully timed and swiftly executed, brought about first diplomatic, then military, dominance of the Third Reich over Europe. The announcement of German rearmament in March 1935 was the Third Reich's first overt violation of the Treaty of Versailles. In this announcement, the fuhrer proclaimed general conscription, stated his intention to expand the army from its legal size of 100,000 to 550,000 troops, and declared the creation of a German air force. 36

Historical Setting
Britain, France, and Italy responded by sending representatives to a conference in Stresa, Italy, to discuss countermeasures. Hitler succeeded, however, in fomenting the rapid disintegration of the Stresa Front by drawing Britain into an Anglo-German naval agreement that would guarantee British naval superiority. The AngloGerman Naval Pact of June 1935, itself a violation of the Treaty of Versailles, implied tacit British acceptance of German rearmament. France and Italy subsequently abandoned their plans for punitive action against Germany. Hitler next endeavored to draw Italy away from the Western powers. After lending verbal support to Benito Mussolini's invasion of Ethiopia. Hitler marched German troops into the Rhineland in March 1936. The German military presence in the Rhineland, a violation of the Versailles and Locarno treaties, suggested the forthcoming alliance between Nazi Germany and fascist Italy and revealed the weakness of the Western democracies. Shortly thereafter, Hitler and Mussolini joined to assist General Francisco Franco in overthrowing Spain's republican government during the Spanish Civil War (1936-39); in November 1936, Germany and Italy formed the Berlin-Rome Axis. In the same year, Germany, Italy, and Japan were diplomatically united in the Anti-Comintern Pact. The next phase in the fihrer's tactics of encroachment was the execution of a plan aimed at eastward expansion. The plan for eventual military aggression was originally discussed at a conference in November 1937 in which Hitler met in secret with German military and political advisers. His immediate aims-the annexation of Austria and the Czechoslovak Sudetenland-were to be accomplished by pseudolegal means on the basis of a unilateral nationalethnic revision of the Treaty of Versailles that provided for the incorporation of territories with German populations into the Third Reich. In February 1938, Hitler announced his intention to annex Austria and called for the resignation of Chancellor Kurt von Schuschnigg. The chancellor attempted to avert annexation (Anschluss) by calling for a national plebiscite that would ratify Austria's independence. The attempt failed, and Schuschnigg stepped down. Arthur von Seyss-Inquart, the new Austrian chancellor and a Nazi puppet, invited German troops to enter Austria. On March 13, Austria was declared a province of the German Reich. Hitler next prepared to annex Czechoslovakia. In April 1938, he instructed the Sudeten Nazis to organize disruptive nationalist agitation in the German-populated Sudetenland. Czechoslovakia, aware of Hitler's annexationist ambitions, appealed to Britain and France for assistance. British prime minister Neville Chamberlain, however, refused to commit his country to defend 37

East Germany: A Country Study
Czechoslovakia and instead organized the Munich Conference of September 1938, in which Britain and France agreed to German annexation of the Sudetenland. The territory was annexed on October 1. In March 1939, Germany occupied the Czech-populated western provinces of Bohemia and Moravia, and Slovakia was made a German puppet-state. When Germany occupied Bohemia and Moravia, Britain and France finally became convinced of Hitler's imperialist-expansionist objectives and announced their intention to defend the sovereignty of Poland, a country that was not German culturally, politically. or linguistically. In April 1939, Hitler raised claims to the Polish city of Danzig; anticipating war, the ftihrer instructed the nilitarv to prepare invasion plans. A month later, Germany and Italy signed the Pact of Steel, a formal military alliance. After negotiations to form an anti-Nazi alliance with the Western powers had repeatedly stalemated, the Soviet Union signed a nonaggression pact with Germany, thus freeing Hitler to act against Poland. On September 1, 1939, German troops invaded Poland. Britain and France declared war on Germany two days later.

World War II
By the end of September, Hitler's armies had overrun western Poland; Soviet armies occupied eastern Poland two weeks after the German invasion. In April 1940, German forces conquered Norway and Denmark, and in May they struck at the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France. Skirting the northwestern end of the Maginot Line, German troops drove deep into northern France. British and French troops offered ineffective resistance against the lightning-like strikes (blitzkrieg) of German tanks and airplanes. A large part of the French armies surrendered, and more than 330,000 British and French soldiers were trapped in Dunkirk on the coast of northern France. However, because Hitler, for a combination of political and military reasons, had halted the advance of his armored divisions, the British were able to rescue the men in Dunkirk. When France fell in June 1940, Hitler. who had originally hoped that Britain would stay out of the war. approached Winston Churchill with the offer of a separate peace: but the new British prime minister was intransigent. The Third
Reich experienced its first military def{'ai in the Battle of tBritlin,

in which the Royal Air Force, during the summer and fIl of 1940,

prevented the German Luftwaffe from gaining the air superiority necessary for an invasion of Britain. As a result, Hitler postponed the planned invasion.


Historical Setting
In the winter of 1940-41, after Japan had joined the Axis powers, Hitler began to plan the invasion of the Soviet Union. Meanwhile, Italy, which had made advances in North Africa and the Mediterranean region, was experiencing setbacks, and Hitler sent German troops to its assistance. As preparation for a campaign against Greece designed to protect Romanian oil fields from British air strikes, Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia were taken into the Berlin-Romc Axis of 1936, and (erman troops were sent to Romania in November 1940. Bulgaria joined the pact in March 1941. That year, in spite of resistance by the army and the civilian population, German troops also occupied Yugoslavia. As a result of the campaign in the Balkans, the German invasion of the Soviet Union was delayed until.Junc 1941. By late fall, Hitler's armies stood before Moscow. The ftihrer had anticipated victory in the Soviet Union within three months. but the early onset of winter stopped German advances. A counteroffensive, launched in the winter of 1941, drove the Germans back from Moscow. In the summer of 1942, Hitler shifted the attack to the south of the Soviet Union and began a large oflensive directed at the Caucasian oil fields. By September 1942, the Axis controlled the area from Norway to North Africa and from France to Stalingrad. .Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, had brought the United States into the war, and the United States joined forces with Britain and the Soviet Union to defeat the Third Reich. The British began to bomb German civilian populations in 1942, and Soviet armies assumed the offensive after defecating German troops in the Battle of Stalingrad in the winter of 1942-43. The Allied road to victory had begun. By May 1943, Allied armies had driven the Axis forces out of Africa and had landed in Italy, and in 1943, also, the Americans, using precision daylight bombing, had begun a series of raids on the ball bearing factories at Schweinfurt and Regensburg. Area bombing, however, fakiled to bring about the submission of the German people, and the daylight raids, although temporarily seriously hindering the production of war matdriel, proved to be extremely costly. As early as 1943, however, the American and British navies had succeeded in substantially reducing the German submarine threat to shipping, thereby clearing the way for the shipment of arms and troops to Britain in preparation for the Normandy invasion. In June 1944, American, British, and Canadian forces invaded France, driving the Germans back and crossing the German frontier in September. The strategic bombing of oil (lumps and oil plants after the Normandy landings crippled the German counteroffensive in the Ardennes, which took place in December. Soviet troops, 3()

East Germany. A Country Study
meanwhile, advanced from the east. Hitler, however, remained determined to fight on and called for the "total mobilization of all Germans" for the war effort. In March 1945, American forces reached the Rhine River; simultaneously Soviet armies overran most of Czechoslovakia and pressed on toward Berlin. Although faced with certain defeat, Hitler insisted that every German city, every village, and finally "every square meter" would have to be defended or left behind as "scorched earth." The western Allied and Soviet armies in Germany made their first contact in Saxony on April 27. Three days later, Hitler and his bride, Eva Braun, committed suicide in a Berlin bunker. Berlin fell to the Soviets on May 2; on May 7 the Third Reich surrendered unconditionally. German military casualties in World War II are estimated at 3.5 million dead; more than 600,000 German civilians were killed in the bombing offensive.

After Hitler's seizure of power in 1933, the Nazis conducted a campaign to "purge" German society. Those who could not be integrated into the new state were removed; German concentration camps became the repository for all "socially undesirable" elements, including communists, socialists, liberals, pacifists, homosexuals, the mentally retarded, and gypsies. Himmler's SS, to which the Gestapo was subordinated, became responsible for this process. Arrests were eventually extended to include Jews, a small minority, which had been made a scapegoat for Germany's problems. Anti-Semitism, which had been emphasized by Austrian and German conservative political parties since the late nineteenth century, assumed a radical form under the Third Reich. The Aryan Paragraph of 1933 decreed that Jews could not hold civil service positions. The Nuremberg Laws of 1935 legalized racist antiSemitism, deprived Jews of the right to citizenship, and restricted relationships between "Aryans" and Jews. These laws did, however, initially reduce random acts of violence against Jews on the streets. By 1938 Jews were not permitted to change their names and were restricted in their freedom of movement. After the Kristallnacht (Crystal Night) of November 9, 1938, during which acts of violence were perpetrated by Nazis against Jews in all parts of Germany, the persecution ofJews entered a new phase: random acts of violence were replaced by the systematic elimination of the Jewish population in Germany, numbering about 600,000 at that time. During World War II, the SS filled the concentration camps with foreign nationals, Russian prisoners of war, and non-German Jews. 40

Historical Setting After 1941 the number of camps and inmates increased more rapidly when the SS began to create extermination camps. Non-Jewish prisoners were assigned to forced labor and/or designated for liquidation; but the "final solution," the Nazi euphemism for genocide, called for the extermination of every Jew. Himmler's Special Duty Section (Sonderdienst-SD) took charge of the extermination camps. The SS carried out extermination by working victims to death, physical torture, medical experimentation, mass shootings, and gassing. The tempo of the mass murder of Jewish men, women, and children was accelerated toward the end of the war. Hitler's preoccupation with the "final solution" was so great that the transport of Jews was at times given preference over the transport of war materiel. Some authorities estimated that 6 million European Jews became victims of the Holocaust. A large number (4,565,000) of these victims came from Poland and the Soviet Union; about 125,000 German Jews were exterminated.

Internal Resistance
Because of the efficiency of the SS, resistance against the Nazi regime was extremely difficult. Moreover, the Germans lacked a strong tradition of resistance to authority. Resistance against the Third Reich, although not a unified movement, nevertheless existed from 1933 to 1945 and assumed many forms, including the refusal to say "Heil Hitler," bad workmanship, factory slowdowns and strikes, sabotage, subversive radio transmissions, distribution of leaflets, and planning of assassinations and coups. Many German professionals and artists turned to "inner emigration," a form of passive resistance in which they pursued their careers without adopting the party line; those who publicly opposed the regime lost their livelihood and were imprisoned or executed. Resistance, limited in 1933 to members of the SPD and KPD, did rot initially include the appeased middle class. Most of the leftist opposition was eliminated by 1934. The Red Band (Rote Kapelle), a designation given by the Gestapo to various resistance groups, continued to operate in Berlin up to 1942, when it was eliminated. Consisting of members with various political beliefs and from all social classes, the Red Band provided the Soviet Union with military information and maintained contact with prisoners of war and forced labor. After the enforcement of Gleichschaltung, some members of German churches, illegal political parties, middle-class youth, university organizations, the civil service, and the military continued to resist the Third Reich either actively or passively. There was, for example, a military-civilian plot to remove Hitler from office if, in the 41

East Germany: A Country Study event of a firm stand by France and Britain, war broke out over the issue of Czechoslovakia. The Grosse Organisation and the Kreisauer Circle coordinated military resistance within the Third Reich. Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg, who had ties with both of these organizations, attempted to assassinate Hitler and effect a coup on July 20, 1944. The coup was planned in cooperation with the civilian resistance and was supported by a large number of generals and field commanders. The news of Hitler's survival of the bomb blast spread, and the SS halted an attempt to secure key government offices. Approximately 5,000 conspirators, including 2,000 military officers, were subsequently executed. The celebrated national hero, General Erwin Rommel, whose participation in the conspiracy was concealed from the public, was forced to take poison. German Democratic Republic Postwar Government At the Yalta Conference, held in February 1945 before the capitulation of the Third Reich, the United States, Britain, and the Soviet Union agreed on the division of Germany into occupation zones. Estimating the territory that the converging armies of the western Allies and the Soviet Union would overrun, the Yalta Conference determined the demarcation line for the respective areas of occupation. Following Germany's surrender, the Allied Control Council, representing the United States, Britain, France, and the Soviet Union, assumed governmental authority in postwar Germany. The Potsdam Conference of July-August 1945 officially recognized the zones and confirmed jurisdiction of the Soviet Military Administration in Germany (Sowjetische Militfiradministration in Deutschland-SMAD) from the Oder and Neisse rivers to the demarcation line (see fig. 6). The Soviet occupation zone included the former states of Brandenburg, Mecklenburg, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, and Thuringia. The city of Berlin was placed under the control of the four powers. Each occupation power assumed rule in its zone by June 1945. The powers originally pursued a common German policy, focused on denazification and demilitarization in preparation for the restoration of a democratic German nation-state. The Soviet occupation zone, however, soon came under total political and economic domination by the Soviet Union. An SMAD decree of June 10 granted permission for the formation of antifascist democratic political parties in the Soviet zone; elections to new state legislatures were scheduled for October 1946. A democratic-antifascist 42

Historical Setling







DemocraticarUnion(hrsih-eorishUnn-D)ad the LiberaliDemcaiPatofGray(ieamorish Partei Deutschlnd-DDwsfreinJl195ThKD it43

East Germany. A Country Study
(with 600,000 members) and the SPD (with 680,000 members), which was under strong pressure from the Communists, merged in April 1946 to form the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED). In the October 1946 elections, the SED polled approximately 50 percent of the vote in each state in the Soviet zone. In Berlin, which was still undivided, the SPD had resisted the party merger and, runring on its own, had polled 48.7 percent of the vote, thus scoring a major electoral victory and d.',cisively defeating the SED, which, with 19.8 percent, was third in the "oting behind the SPD and the CDU. The SMAD introduced an economic reform program and simultaneously arranged for German war reparations to the Soviet Union. Military industries and those owned by the state, by Nazi activists, and by war criminals were confiscated. These industries amounted to approximately 60 percent of total industrial production in the Soviet zone. Most heavy industry (constituting 20 percent of total production) was claimed by the Soviet Union as reparations, and Soviet joint stock companies (Sowjetische Aktiengesellschaften-SAGs) were formed (see Economic Policy and Performance, ch. 3). The remaining confiscated industrial property was nationalized, leaving 40 percent of total industrial production to private enterprise. The agrarian reform expropriated all land belonging to former Nazis and war criminals and generally limited ownership to 100 hectares. Some 500 Junker estates were converted into collective people's farms, and more than 3 million hectares were distributed among 500,000 peasant farmers, agricultural laborers, and refugees. Soviet and Western cooperation in Germany ended with the onset of the Cold War in late 1947. In March 1948, the United States, Britain, and France met in London and agreed to unite the Western zones and to establish a West German republic. The Soviet Union responded by leaving the Allied Control Council and prepared to create an East German state. In June 1948, the Soviet Union blockaded Berlin in an effort to incorporate the city into its zone. The Soviet Union envisaged an East German state controlled by the SED and organized on the Soviet model (see The Socialist Unity Party of Germany, ch. 4). Thus Joseph Stalin called for the transformation of the SED into a Soviet-style "party of the new type." To that end, Stalin named the Soviet-trained German coinmunist Walter Ulbricht as first secretary of the SED, and the Politburo, Secretariat, and Central Committee were formed. According to the Leninist principle of democratic centralism, each party bodyr was subordinated to the authority of the next higher party bodt. Ulbricht, as party chief, essentially acquired dictatorial powers. The 44

Historical Setting
SED committed itself ideologically to Marxism-Leninism and the international class struggle as defined by the Soviet Union. Many former members of the SPD and some communist advocates of a democratic "road to socialism" were purged from the SED. In addition, the Soviet Union arranged to strengthen the influence of the SED in the antifascist bloc. The middle-class CDU and LDPD were weakened by the creation of two new parties, the National Democratic Party of Germany (National-Demokratische Partei Deutschlands-NDPD) and the Democratic Peasants' Party of Germany (Demokratische Bauernpartei Deutschlands-DBD). The SED accorded political representation to mass organizations and, most significant, to the party-controlled Free German Trade Union Federation (Freier Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund-FDGB). In November 1948, the German Economic Commission (Deutsche Wirtschaftskomission-DWK), including antifascist bloc representation, assumed administrative authority. On October 7, 1949, the DWK formed a provisional government and proclaimed establishment of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). Wilhelm Pieck, a party leader, was elected first president. Integration into the Soviet System The years 1949 to 1955 were a period of Stalinization, during which East Germany was politically consolidated as an authoritarian Soviet-style state under SED leadership. Ulbricht and the SED controlled the National Front coalition, a federation of all political parties and mass organizations that technically preserved political pluralism. The 1949 constitution formally established a democratic federal republic and created the States Chamber and the People's Chamber. The People's Chamber, according to the constitution the highest state body, was vested with legislative sovereignty. The SED controlled the Council of Ministers, however, and reduced the legislative function of the People's Chamber to that of acclamation. Election to the People's Chamber and the state legislatures (later replaced by district legislatures) was based on a joint ballot prepared by the National Front; voters merely registered their approval or disapproval. The SED imposed conformity to MarxistLeninist ideology on the educational system, the press, social organizations, and cultural institutions. In order to guarantee the party's dominance within the state, all members of the SED who were active in state organs were obliged to carry out party resoluions. The State Security Service (Staatssicherheitsdienst-SSD) and the Ministry of State Security monitored public life with a broad network of agents and contributed to eliminating opposition and 45

East Germany. A Country Study
regirnenting political and social af'fairs (see Creation of the Ministry of State Security, ch. 5). The Third Party Congress of July 1950 emphasized industrial progress. The industrial sector, employing 40 percent of the working population, was subjected to further nationalization, which resulted in the formation of the Publicly Owned Enterprises (Volkseigene Betriebe-VEBs). These enterprises incorporated 75 percent of the industrial sector. The First Five-Year Plan (1951-55) introduced centralized state planning; it stressed high production quotas for heavy industry and increased labor productivity. The pressures of the plan caused an exodus of East German citizens to West Germany. In 1951 monthly emigration figures fluctuated between 11,500 and 17,000. By 1953 an average of 37,000 men, women, and children were leaving each month. Stalin died in March 1953. In June the SED, hoping to pacify workers with an improved standard of living, announced the New Course. The New Course in East Germany was based on the economic policy initiated by Georgi Malenkov in the Soviet Union. Malenkov's policy, which aimed at improvement in the standard of' living, stressed a shift in investment toward light industry and trade and a greater availability of consumer goods. The SED, in addition to shifting emphasis from heavy industry to consumer goods, initiated a program for alleviating economic hardships. This led to a reduction of delivery quotas and taxes, the availability of state loans to private business, and an increase in the allocation of production material. The New Course did not, however, alleviate the burden of the East German workers. High production quotas and spiraling work norms remained in effect, and the discontent of the workers resulted in an uprising on June 17, 1953. Strikes and demonstrations erupted spontaneously in major industrial centers. The workers demanded economic reforms and called for de-Stalinization and an end to the Ulbricht regime. The East German People's Police and the Soviet Army suppressed the uprising, in which approximately 500 participants were killed. In 1954 the Soviet Union granted East Germany formal sovereignty, and the Soviet Control Commission in Berlin was disbanded. By this time, reparations payments had been completed, and the SAGs had been restored to East German ownership. The five states formerly constituting the Soviet occupation zone also had been dissolved and replaced by fifteen districts (Bezirke) in 1952; the United States, Britain, and France do not recognize the fifteenth district, East Berlin. East Germany began active participation in the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon) in 1950 46

East Berliners throw stones at Soviet taks during the uprising oi une 17, 1953. Courtesy rnied Press International

(see Appendix B). In 1956 the National People's Army (Nationale Volksarmee-NVA) was created, and East Germany became a member of the Warsaw Pact (see Appendix C).

Collectivization and Nationalization of
Agriculture and Industry In 1956, at the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, First Secretary Nikita Khrushchev repudiated Stalinism. Although Ulbricht remained committed to Stalinist methods, an academic intelligentsia within the SEI) leadership demanded reform. To this end, Wolf'gang Harich, the main spokesman for de-Stalinization, issued a platform advocating a democratic and parliamentary road to socialism. But Harich had misjudged the temper of the times and the power of Ulbricht, in late 1956, he and his associates were quickly purged from the SED ranks and imprisoned. An SED party plenum in July 1956 confirmed Ulbricht's leadership and presented the Second Five-Year Plan (1956-6(0). The plan employed the slogan 'modernization, mechanization. an(l automation" to emphasize the new focus on technological progress. At the plenum, the regime announced its intention to develop nuclear energy, and the first nuclear reactor in East Germany was activated 47

East Germany: A Country Study
in 1957. The government increased industrial production quotas by 55 percent and renewed emphasis on heavy industry. The Second Five-Year Plan committed East Germany to accelerated efforts toward agricultural collectivization and completion of the nationalization of the industrial sector. By 1958 the agricultural sector still consisted primarily of the 750,000 privately owned farms that comprised 70 percent of all arable land; only 6,000 Agricultural Cooperatives (Landwirtschaftliche Produktionsgenossenschaften-LPGs) had been formed. In 1958-59 the SED subjected private farmers to quota pressures and sent agitation teams to villages in an effort to encourage "voluntary" collectivization. The teams used threats, and in November and December 1959 resisting farmers were arrested by the SSD. By mid-1960 nearly 85 percent of all arable land was incorporated in more than 19,000 LPGs; state farms comprised another 6 percent. By 1961 the socialist sector produced 90 percent of East Germany's agricultural products (see Agriculture, ch. 3). An extensive economic management reform by the SED in February 1958 included the transfer of a large number of industrial ministries to the State Planning Commission. In order to accelerate the nationalization of industry, the SED offered entrepreneurs 50-percent partnership incentives for transforming their firms into VEBs. At the close of 1960, private enterprise controlled only 9 percent of total industrial production. Production Cooperatives (Produktionsgenossenschaften-PGs) incorporated one-third of the artisan sector during 1960-61, a rise from 6 percent in 1958. The Second Five-Year Plan encountered difficulties, and the regime replaced it with the Seven-Year Plan (1959-65). The new plan aimed at achieving West Germany's per capita production by the end of 1961, set higher production quotas, and called for an 85 percent increase in labor productivity. Emigration again increased, totaling 143,000 in 1959 and 199,000 in 1960. The maiority of the emigrants were workers, and 50 percent were under 25 years of age. The labor drain, which had exceeded a total of 2.5 million citizens between 1949 and 1961, resulted in the August 1961 SED decision to build the Berlin Wall.

New Economic System
The annual industrial growth rate declined steadily after 1959. The Soviet Union therefore recommended that East Germany implement the reforms of Soviet economist Evsei Liberman, an advocate of the principle of profitability and other market principles for communist economies. In 1963 Ulbricht adapted Liberman's theories and introduced the New Economic System (NES), 48

Members oj the People's Police reinforce the Berlin Wall with concrete slabs in 1965. Courtesy United Press International

an economic reform program providing for some decentralization in decisiMo making and the consideration of market and pertormance criteria (see Economic Policy and Performance, ch. 3). The NES aimed at creating an efficient economic system and transforming East Germany into a leading industrial nation. Under the NES, the task of establishing future economic development was assigned to central planning. Decentralization involved the partial transfer of decision-making authority from the central State Planning Commission and National Economic Council to the Associations of Publicly Owned Enterprises (Vereinigungen Volkseigener Betriebe-VVBs), parent organizations intended to promote specialization within the same areas of production. The central planning authorities set overall production goals, but each VVB determined its own internal financing, utilization of technology, and allocation of manpower and resources. As intermediary bodies, the VVBs also functioned to synthesize information and recommendations from the VEBs. The NES stipulated that production decisions be made on the basis of profitability, that salaries reflect perf'ormance, and that prices respond to supply and demand. The NES brought forth a new elite in politics as well as in management of the economy, and in 1963 Ulbricht announced a new policy regarding admission to the leading ranks of the SE). 49

East Germany: A Country Study
Ulbricht opened the Politburo and the Central Committee to younger members who had more education than their predecessors and who had acquired managerial and technical skills. As a consequence of the new policy, the SED elite became divided into political and economic factions, the latter composed of members of the new technocratic elite. Because of the emphasis on professionalization in the SED cadre policy after 1963, the composition of the mass membership changed: in 1967 about 250,000 members (14 percent) of the total 1.8 million SED membership had completed a course of study at a university, technical college, or trade school. The SED emphasis on managerial and technical competence also enabled members of the technocratic elite to enter the top echelons of the state bureaucracy, formerly reserved for political dogmatists. Managers of the VVBs were chosen on the basis of professional training rather than ideological conformity. Within the individual enterprises, the number of professional positions and jobs for the technically skilled increased. The SED stressed education in managerial and technical sciences as the route to social advancement and material rewards. In addition, it promised to raise the standard of living for all citizens. From 1964 until 1967, real wages increased, and the supply of consumer goods, including luxury items, improved.

Ulbricht Versus Dtente
Ulbricht's foreign policy from 1967 to 1971 responded to the beginning of the era of d~tente with the West. Although detente offered East Germany the opportunity to overcome its isolation in foreign policy and to gain Western recognition as a sovereign state, the SED leader was reluctant to pursue a policy of rapprochement with West Germany. Both Germanies had retained the goal of future unification; however, both remained committed to their own irreconcilable political systems. The 1968 East German Constitution proclaimed the victory of socialism and restated the country's commitment to unification under communist leadership. However, the SED leadership, although successful in establishing socialism in East Germany, had limited success in winning popular support for the repressive social system. In spite of the epithet "the other German miracle," the democratic politics and higher material progress of West Germany continued to attract East German citizens. Ulbricht feared that hopes for a democratic government or a reunification with West Germany would cause unrest among East German citizens, who since 1961 appeared to have come to terms with social and living conditions. 50

Historical Setting
In the late 1960s, Ulbricht made the Council of State the main governmental organ. The twenty-four-member, multiparty council, headed by Ulbricht and dominated by its fifteen SED representatives, generated a new era of political conservatism. Foreign and domestic policies in the final years of the Ulbricht era reflected strong commitment to an aggressive strategy toward the West and toward Western ideology. Ulbricht's foreign policy focused on strengthening ties with Warsaw Pact countries and on organizing opposition to d6tente. In 1967 he persuaded Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Bulgaria to conclude bilateral mutual assistance treaties with East Germany. The Ulbricht Doctrine, subsequently signed by these states, committed them to reject the normalization of relations with West Germany unless Bonn formally recognized East German sovereignty. Ulbricht also encouraged the abrogation of Soviet bloc relations with the industrialized West, and in 1968 he launched a spirited campaign to convince the Comecon states to intensify their economic developmc_.,t "by their own means." Considering claims for freedom and democracy within the Soviet bloc a danger to its domestic policies, the SED, from the beginning, attacked Prague's new political course, which resulted in intervention by the Soviet military and other Warsaw Pact contingents in 1968 (see Appendix C). Domestically the East German regime replaced the NES with the Economic System of Socialism (ESS), which focused on hightechnology sectors in order to make self-suftficient growth possible. Overall, centralized planning was reintroduced in the so-called structure-determining areas, which included electronics, chemicals, and plastics. Industrial combines were formed to integrate vertically industries involved in the manufacture of vital final products. Price subsidies were restored to accelerate growth in favored sectors. The annual plan for 1968 set production quotas in the structure-determining areas 2.6 percent higher than in the remaining sectors in order to achieve industrial growth in these areas. The state set the 1969-70 goals for high-technology sectors even higher. Failure to meet ESS goals resulted in the conclusive termination of the reform effort in 1970. In August 1970, the Soviet Union and West Germany signed the Moscow Treaty, in which the two countries pledged nonaggression in their relations and in matters concerning European and international security and confirmed the Oder-Neisse line. Moscow subsequently pressured East Germany to begin bilateral talks with West Germany. Ulbricht resisted, further weakening his leadership, which had been damaged by the failure of the ESS. In May 1971, the SE1) Central Committee chose Erich Honecker 51

East Germany: A Country Study, to succeed Ulbricht as the party's first secretary. Although Ulbricht was allowed to retain the chairmanship of the Council of State until his death in 1973, the office had been reduced in importance.

Honecker and East-West Rapprochement
Honecker combined loyalty to the Soviet Union with flexibility toward d~tente. At the Eighth Party Congress in June 1971, he presented the political program of the new regime. In his reformulation of East German foreign policy, Honecker renounced the objective of a unified Germany and adopted the "defensive" position of ideological Abgrenzung. Under this program, the country defined itself as a distinct "socialist state" and emphasized its allegiance to the Soviet Union. Abgrenzung, by defending East German sovereignty, in turn contributed to the success of d6tente negotiations that led to the Four Power Agreement on Berlin (Berlin

Agreement) in 1971 and the Basic Treaty with West Germany in
December 1972. The Berlin Agreement and the Basic Treaty normalized relations between East Germany and West Germany. The Berlin Agreement (effective June 1972), signed by the United States, Britain, France, and the Soviet Union, protected trade and travel relations between West Berlin and West Germany and aimed at improving communications between East Berlin and West Berlin. The Soviet Union stipulated, however, that West Berlin would not be incorporated into West Germany. The Basic Treaty (effective June 1973) politically recognized two German states, and the two countries pledged to respect one another's sovereignty. Under the terms of the treaty, diplomatic missions were to be exchanged and commercial, tourist, cultural, and communications relations established. In September 1973, both countries joined the United Nations, and thus East Germany received its long-sought international recognition. The Main Task, introduced by Honecker in 1971, formulated domestic policy for the 1970s. The program re-emphasized Marxism-Leninism and the international class struggle. During this period, the SED launched a massive propaganda campaign to win citizens to its Soviet-style socialism and to restore the "worker" to prominence. The Main Task restated the economic goal of industrial progress, but this goal was to be achieved within the context of centralized state planning. Consumer socialism-the new program featured in the Main Task-was an effort to magnify the appeal of socialism by offering special consideration for the material needs of the working class. The state extensively revamped wage policy and gave more attention to increa3ing the availability of 52

mmm nllll



•IfIt _

- n


Historical Setting consumer goods. The regime also accelerated the construction of new housing and the renovation of existing apartments; 60 percent of new and renovated housing was allotted to working-class families. Rents, which were subsidized, remained extremely low. Because women constituted nearly 50 percent of the labor force, child-care facilities, including nurseries and kindergartens, were provided for the children of working mothers. Women in the labor force received salaried maternity leave which ranged from six months to one year. The state also increased retirement annuities (see Population Structure and Dynamics, ch. 2).

Two Germanies
From the mid-1970s, East Germany remained poised between East and West. The 1974 amendment to the Constitution deleted all references to the "German nation" and "German unity" and designated East Germany "a socialist nation-state of workers and peasants" and "an inseparable constituent part of the socialist community of states." However, the SED leadership had little success in inculcating East Germans with a sense of ideological identification with the Soviet Union. Honecker, conceding to public opinion, devised the formula "citizenship, GDR; nationality, German." In so doing, the SED first secretary acknowledged the persisting psychological and emotional attachment of East German citizens to German traditions and culture and, by implication, to their German neighbors in West Germany. Although Abgrenzung constituted the foundation of Honecker's policy, dftente strengthened ties between the two Germanies. Between 5 and 7 million West Germans and West Berliners visited East Germany each year. Telephone and postal communications between the two countries were significantly improved. Personal ties between East German and West German families and friends were being restored, and East German citizens had more direct contact with West German politics and material affluence, particularly through radio and television. West Germany was East Germany's supplier of high-quality consumer goods, including luxury items, and the latter's citizens frequented both the Intershops, which sold goods for Western currency, and the Exquisit and Delikat shops, which sold imported goods for East German currency. As part of the general detente between East and West, East Germany participated in the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe and in July 1975 signed the Helsinki Final Act, which was to guarantee the regime's recognition of human rights. The Final Act's provision for freedom of movement elicited approximately 53

East Germany: A Country Study 120,000 East German applications for permission to emigrate, but the applications were rejected. Both Germanies have continued a search for national identity. From the beginning, the newly formed East German republic tried to establish its own separate identity. Because of Marx's abhorrence of Prussia, the SED repudiated continuity between Prussia and East Germany. In an attempt to obliterate East Germany's Prussian heritage, the SED destroyed the Junker manor houses and the Berlin municipal castle and removed the equestrian statue of Frederick the Great from East Berlin. Instead the SED focused on the progressive heritage of German history, including Thomas Mintzer's role in the Great Peasant War and the role played by the heroes of the class struggle during Prussia's industrialization. Nevertheless, as early as 1956 East Germany's Prussian heritage asserted itself in the NVA. As a result of the Ninth Party Congress in May 1976, East Germany has since 1976-77 considered its own history as the essence of German history, in which West Germany is only an episode. It has laid claim to reformers such as Karl, Freiherr vom Stein, Karl August von Hardenberg, Wilhelm von Humboldt, and Gerhard von Scharnhorst. The statue of Frederick the Great has meanwhile been restored to prominence in East Berlin. Honecker's references to the former Prussian king in his speeches reflected East Germany's official policy of revisionism toward Prussia, which also included Bismarck and the resistance group Red Band. East Germany has also laid claim to the formerly maligned Martin Luther and to the organizers of the Spartacus League, Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg. In spite of detente, the Honecker regime remained committed to Soviet-style socialism and continued a strict policy toward dissidents. A critical Marxist intelligentsia within the SED nevertheless renewed the plea for democratic reform. Among them was the poet-singer Wolf Biermann, who with Robert Havemann had led a circle of artists and writers advocating democratization; he was expelled from East Germany in November 1976 for dissident activities. Following Biermann's expulsion, the SED leadership disciplined more than 100 dissident intellectuals. Despite the government's actions, East German writers began to publish political statements in the West German press and periodical literature. The most prominent example was Rudolf Bahro's Die Alternative, which was published in West Germany in August 1977. The publication led to the author's arrest, imprisonment, and deportation to West Germany. In late 1977, a manifesto of the "League of[Democratic Communists of Germany" appeared in the West German magazine Der Spiegel. The league, consisting ostensibly of anonymous 54

Historical Setting middle- to high-ranking SED functionaries, demanded democratic reform in preparation for reunification. Even after an exodus of artists in protest against Biermann's expulsion, the SED continued its repressive policy against dissidents. The state subjected literature, one of the few vehicles of opposition and nonconformism in East Germany, to ideological attacks and censorship. This policy led to an exodus of prominent writers, which lasted until 1981. The Lutheran Church also became openly critical of SED policies. Although in 1980-81 the SED intensified its censorship of church publications in response to the Polish Solidarity movement, it maintained, tor the most part. a flexible attitude toward the church. The consecration of a church building in May 1981 in Eisenhiittenstadt, which according to the SED leadership was not permitted to build a church owing to its status as a "socialist city," demonstrated this flexibility (see Religion and Religious Organizations, ch. 2). Tenth Party Congress The Tenth Party Congress, which took place in April 1981, focused on improving the economy, stabilizing the socialist svstern, achieving success in foreign policy, and strengthening relations with West Germany. Presenting the SED as the leading power in all areas of East German society, General Secretary (the title changed from first secretary in 1976) Honecker emphasized the importance of educating loyal cadres in order to secure the party's position. He announced that more than one-third of all party members and candidates and nearly two-thirds of the partv' secretaries had completed a course of study at a university, technical college, or trade school and that four-fifths of the party secretaries had received training in a party school for more than a year. Stating that a relaxation of "democratic centralism" was unacceptable, Honecker emphasized rigid centralism within the party. Outlining the SED's general course, the congress confirmed the unit\ of East Germany's economic and social policy on the domestic front and its absolute commitment to the Soviet Union in foreign policy. In keeping with the latter pronouncement, the SED approved the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan. The East German stance differed from that taken by the Yugoslas. Romanian, and Italian coimunists, who criticized the Soviet action. The SED's Central Committee, which during the 1960s had been an advisory body, was reduced to the function of an acclamation body during the Tenth Party Congress. The Politburo and the Secretariat remained for the most part unchanged. In addition to policy issues, the congress focused on the new Five-Year Plan 55

East Germany: A Country Study (1981-85), calling for higher productivity, more efficient use of material resources, and better quality products. Although the previous five-year plan had not been fulfilled, the congress again set very high goals. Because it barely went beyond the repetition of previous aims and the continuation of domestic and foreign policies, the Tenth Party Congress has been termed the party congress of continuity.

The reader may enjoy Carola Stern's Ulbricht: A PoliticalBiography and Heinz Lippmann's Honecker and the New Politics of Europe. Jonathan Steel's Inside East Germany: The State That Came infrom the Cold provides a journalist's account. Hartmut Zimmermann's essay "The GDR in the 1970s," in Problems of Communism, March-April 1978, serves as an excellent introduction to the contemporary situation. For background, Geoffrey Barraclough's The Origins of Modern Germany is a classic study of the late-medieval German past. Germany. 1866-.945, by Gordon A. Craig, represents a recent synthesis of the history of the German nation-state. Fritz Fischer's controversial Germany's Aims in the First World War warrants brief perusal: the author collects a wealth of documentation revealing the political and social context of World War I. The German Dictatorship: The Origins, Structure, and Effects of National Soaalism by Karl Dietrich Bracher offers an excellent analysis of Hitler's road to power and the Third Reich. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Chapter 2. The Society and Its Environment



Clockwisefrom top: Handel, Schumann, and Bach

THE GERMAN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC (East Germany) lies in the heart of the northern plains of Europe and covers an area of approximately 108,568 square kilometers, including East Berlin (which is not recognized as part of East Germany by the United States, France, and Britain). It is bounded on the north by the Baltic Sea, on the east by Poland, on the southeast by Czechoslovakia, and on the west and southwest by the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany). The terrain is gentle. Lowlands and rolling hills characterize about two-thirds of the country; the southern third comprises uplands and mountains. The most fertile agricultural belt and the most densely settled area of the country is the B6rderland, where the central lowlands merge into the uplands. The population, which has declined steadily since World War II, was about 16.7 million in 1986. Low birthrates and the dynamics of the population combined with historical trends to produce an unbalanced age and sex structure; in the mid-1980s, a high proportion of the population was over sixty years of age. Most people lived in medium-sized towns of 5,000 to 50,000 residents. There were, however, some large cities, most of which were located in the southern section of the country. The largest city was East Berlin with a population of 1.2 million. East Germany considered East Berlin its capital, although in the view of the Western Allies the entire city is still under the control of the former Allied powers, the United States, Britain, France, and the Soviet Union. East Germany is relatively homogeneous culturally and linguistically. It does have, however, a small Slavic population known as Sorbs, who in 1984 numbered approximately 34,000 and resided primarily around the cities of Cottbus, Bautzen, and Hoyerswerda. A small Jewish community of a few hundred, all that remain of the prewar Jewish population, also continue to live in East Germany. In the 1970s, despite the country's cultural ties with West Germany, the East German government adopted a two-nation policy. Abandoning the goal of reunification, East Germany concentrated on building a national consciousness that was distinct from that of the West Germans. This effort, however, was not very successful, and East Germans continued to consider themselves part of a larger German community that included the populations of both German states. 59

East Germany: A Country Study
The country calls itself a "socialist state of workers and peasants." Theoretically all power resides in the hands of the working class, but in reality the state exercises control of all resources and means of production. The communist party leadership forms the elite of society and is separated from the majority of the population by the privileges and power it enjoys. Members of the intelligentsia form an intermediate stratum. This segment of the population includes members from the prewar middle class as well as a group of newly trained and educated managers, planners, technicians, artists and others trained in the humanities, and scientists. In general the members of the intelligentsia are apolitical. The vast majority of the population is categorized as workers, a grouping that includes manual laborers and white-collar workers. Social programs implemented by the government are intended to restructure society and provide equal benefits for the working-class man and woman. Health, housing, and welfare programs are part of the scheme of restructuring society. The government has had mixed results in these areas. Since the 1970s, the government has catered to workers' demands for more and better consumer goods. Whether or not the government would be able to meet these demands in the future was uncertain because of the slowdown in economic growth. The family is the basic unit of society and is recognized as such by communist officials, who consider it the smallest collective unit. Parents are charged with educating their children in the socialist way of life. Family structure and relationships have been affected by the increased participation of women in the work force. In the mid-1980s, there were three major mass organizationsthe Free German Trade Union Federation, the Free German Youth, and the Democratic Women's League of Germany. These organizations sought to produce a unity of interests among all segments of the population and to mobilize support for government policies. The educational system, which is a source of pride for the East German government and people, is the primary agent of socialization. In the mid-1980s, all children began the ten-grade general polytechnical school at the age of six. The curriculum emphasized science and mathematics and contained a "practical experience" component designed to bridge the gap between learning and work. Upon completion of the ten-year program, most students began vocational training as apprentices in local factories. As of 1987, about 47 percent of the East German population was Protestant. Another 7 percent was Roman Catholic, and under 1 percent adhered to other religious beliefs. The Lutheran Church, the main Protestant denomination, was organized into eight 60

The Society and Its Environment
territorial churches that were, in turn, federated into two primary organizations. Both of these groups had separated from their West German counterparts in 1968. They cooperated with each other under a loose federal structure set up in 1969, but as of the mid1980s there was talk of integrating the Lutheran churches into a single entity. The church characterized its relationship with the regime as one of critical solidarity, a phrase that implied a mixture of compromise and criticism. The regime considered the church an anomaly and generally discouraged the population from participating in religious activities. For its part, in the mid-1980s the church became a focus of dissent because it provided institutional and ideological foundations for the growth of an unofficial peace movement. In the early 1980s, an organized opposition emerged that revolved around the issues of peace and the demilitarization of East German society. Opposition also crystallized around small groups of the creative intelligentsia, who began openly to criticize the regime in their artistic and philosophical works. Most of the young intellectuals were committed Marxists who sought to reform the system. Since the mid-1970s, the regime has attempted to stifle dissent by exiling these critics to the West. Dissent was also evident in the number of East Germans who attempted to leave the country both legally and illegally.

Physical Environment
East Germany is a state artificially and arbitrarily carved from the remnants of the Third Reich. At the end of World War II, Germany was partitioned into four occupation zones. The partitioning was to be a temporary measure, and the country was to be reunited after a short transitional period of one to three years. Political considerations and power rivalries, however, ultimately precluded speedy reunification. The British, French, and American zones were merged in 1949 to become the Federal Republic of Germany. The Soviet zone became the German Democratic Republic, "an independent socialist state," later that same year. The country covers an area of 108,568 square kilometers (including East Berlin), somewhat less than one-third the area of West Germany. The Baltic Sea coastline, East Germany's northern boundary, measures about 320 kilometers. The coastline has many natural harbors and is favorable for navigation, but before the war it had no important ports. Czechoslovakia and East Germany share a border of about 427 kilometers to the southeast. The border 61

East Germany. A Country Study
conforms to pre-1938 boundaries. The Erzgebirge (mountain range) form a natural frontier, although the mountains are not an impassable barrier. The Potsdam Protocol of 1945 defined eastward limits. Portions of Germany's prewar territories, most notably East Prussia, were placed under the administration of the Soviet Union and Poland pending conclusion of a final German peace treaty. The Allied powers agreed in principle that Poland should be given German territory to make up for land it had lost to the Soviet Union in 1939. At Potsdam the boundaries dividing Germany and Poland were drawn along the Oder and Neisse rivers located about 160 kilometers to the west of the prewar boundary. Poland was also given a small section of land in the north, lying to the west of the Oder and containing the port of Stettin (Polish: Szczecin) and the Swine Channel, which opens to the sea. East Germany confirmed the inviolability of the Oder-Neisse line in the early 1950s. Until 1970 West Germany refused to recognize the border and referred to the former German territories controlled by Poland and the Soviet Union as lands under foreign administration. However, the Moscow and Warsaw treaties, signed by West Germany in 1970, formally confirmed the Oder.-Neisse line as Germany's easternmost boundary. The border extends for about 453 kilometers. The western boundary of the Soviet zone was outlined in a protocol among the Allied powers in 1944, shortly before the end of the war. The western and southwestern frontier extends 1,381 kilometers from Li.beck Bay on the Baltic Sea southward. Following the old prewar state boundaries, the frontier cuts across the northern plains, tracing the course of the Elbe River for a short distance before traversing southward through the Harz (mountain range) and then twisting eastward through Thiiringer Wald (forested mountain range). The border dividing the two Germanies is among the most closely guarded and fortified in the world. The areas along the border have been cleared of trees and houses. Barbed wire fences, mine fields, and control towers mark the entire length; and the restricted zone, including the high security area, stretches over 780 meters in width. What began as a temporary demarcation of administrative zones between the Allied powers has been made into a virtually impenetrable border by East Germany. One year after the conclusion of the 1972 Basic Treaty, the Boundary Commission was established to settle boundary questions between the two states. Bilateral frontier agreements were also concluded in 1973 to provide for care of frontier waterways and to handle environmental problems. In 1978 the two Germanies signed a protocol on the demarcation of about 90 percent of the inter-German 62

The Society and Its Environment
border. Still disputed in early 1937 was a ninety-five kilometer section of the Elbe River in the north.

East Germany lies in the heart of the northern European plain. The terrain is gentle, and the landscape is marked by few sharp contrasts. Landform areas merge into one another; no significant natural boundaries bar communications or distinguish one section of the country from another. The country, however, can be roughly divided into geographic regions. The northern plain covers most of the country and contains the coastal area in the far north and the lowlands in the center. The uplands consist of mountains and rolling hills that cover the southern section (see fig. 7). The district of Rostock stretches along the entire length of the Baltic coast. The coastline is uneven but generally flat and sandy. The continuous action of wind and waves has created sand dunes and ridges along the coast, and sandbars have formed that connect the mainland with some of its offshore islands. The northern sections of the Schwerin and Neubrandenburg districts, which are also categorized as coastal, are dotted with marshes and numerous lakes. Much of East Germany contains soils of poor quality. The coastal section is no exception; soils are sandy, porous, and low in nutrients. Nonetheless, with the exception of the B6rderland in the south, the coastal region contains some of the most intensively cultivated agricultural land in the country. About ninetenths of the area is under cultivation; it produces mainly rye and potatoes. T he region enjoys a maritime climate that is moderate and marked by few extremes in temperature. Average annual rainfall is between sixty-one and sixty-four centimeters, close to the national average. Most of the country lies in an area of the northern plains known as the central lowlands. This includes the districts of Frankfurt, Potsdam, and Cottbus as well as portions of Schwerin, Neubrandenburg, Magdeburg, Halle, Leipzig, and Dresden. This region (together with the coastal area) covers about 80 to 85 percent of the land and was formed by glaciation during the Quaternary period. The lowlands are dominated by rolling hills and low ridges that rarely reach elevations in excess of ninety-one meters above sea level. Numerous lakes, varying in size, shape, and depth, cover the landscape, particularly in western Neubrandenburg and around Berlin. In general these lakes are of little commercial value because of their shallow depth. Broad valleys, carved as glaciers receded, crosscut the plains, providing natural transportation routes. Soils of gravel and coarse sand predominate, and, as a result, much of 63"

East Germany: A Country Study

- -International




® Nat,onal capitai






FEEA w. 8.1 A-4)OSLOAK




yauhr~a~ _ __s

Figure 7. Topography and Drainage 64

The Society and Its Environment
the area, especially around Berlin, is forest and pastureland. The most fertile soils of clay and sand loam are found in the Elbe basin and along the rivers bordering Poland, but only slightly more than half the region is under cultivation. The climate exhibits greater extremes of temperature as the maritime climate of the coast gives way to a continental climate where the rivers freeze in winter. In general, however, the weather is moderate. Rainfall approximates the national average. The B6rderland, a fertile belt of rolling countryside, forms a transition zone from the central lowlands to the uplands in the south. The country's most valuable agricultural land is found here. Loess, a fine silt, provides a thick soil cover that is favorable for intensive cultivation of crops such as wheat, barley, and sugar beets. The B6rderland forms an arc extending from the districts of Magdeburg and Halle southeast through parts of Leipzig and Dresden. Its broadest section lies along the Elbe and Saale rivers. Much of the country's mineral wealth, including sizable reserves of lignite and potash, is found in this area. The climate is continental but moderate, and the growing season is relatively long. The uplands cover about 20 percent of the southern section. The landscape consists of hills and high ridges. Included in this region are portions of the districts of Magdeburg, Halle, Leipzig, Dresden, Erfurt, Suhl, Gera, and Karl-Marx-Stadt. The Harz forms the northwest section of the uplands; the highest peak, Brocken, reaches a height of 1,141 meters. In the southwest, extending some 104 kilometers, is the Thiiringer Wald, a narrow ridge of thick woodland. To the southeast, forming the border with Czechoslovakia, are the Erzgebirge. Elevations in this range reach 1,213 meters. Many major industrial centers are situated along the base of the Erzgebirge. Traditional passages into the region lie between the Harz and the Thiuringer Wald and between the Thuiringer Wald and the Erzgebirge. Good agricultural land is found at the base of the Thuringer Wald surrounding Erfurt, but soils in the southernmost districts are poor and not favorable for cultivation. Temperatures depend on elevation and exposure, and they sometimes dip quite low in the higher mountain areas. Rainfall varies. In the Harz, for example, rainfall averages as high as 147 centimeters a year whereas at the base of the Thfiringer Wald, where the uplands merge with the B6rderland, rainfall averages about fifty-one centimeters.

In 1986 the estimated population was 16.7 million, or between one-fourth and one-third that of West Germany. In the years since 65

East Germany: A Country Study
the war, population has declined steadily, posing a serious problem for East German planners interested in balanced economic growth and social development. The population reached a peak of 19.1 million in 1948. This postwar increase resulted largely from the influx of Germans expelled from Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. After 1950, however, the population began to decline and, except for a small increase in the early 1960s (after the construction of the Berlin Wall), the country continued to register a negative growth rate. In 1950 the official census recorded a resident population of 18.3 million; by 1960 the number had dropped to 17.2 million; and by 1970 it had decreased to 17.1 million. Population levelled off in the late 1970s at around 16.7 million, reflecting a zero rate of growth.

Historical Trends
The population pyramids of both East Germany and West Germany have reflected casualties suffered during two world wars, lower birthrates in the prewar and postwar periods, and the large-scale movement of population in the ten to fifteen years after World War II. East Germany, however, has felt these negative effects more severely than West Germany and has taken a longer time to recover from them. The number of German military and civilian deaths resulting from World War II is estimated at between 3.5 and 4.5 million. Most of the casualties were in the twenty-to-forty-four age group, and most of these were men in their thirties. The ratio of women to men was five to four in 1950. The surplus of females was especially marked in the twenty-one-to-thirty-five age group, where women outnumbered men by more than two to one. The net result was a decline in marriage and birthrates, an increase in the death rate, and an increase in the proportion of the population over fortyfive years of age. Compounding the problem was an influx of Germans from Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union and an equally dramatic flow of refugees from East Germany to West Germany. An estimated 11.7 million ethnic Germans were expelled from the Soviet Union, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Yugoslavia, and Romania between 1945 and 1960. Most were transferred in the first two years after the war, and most were channeled initially into the Soviet zone, although only an estimated 2.2 million finally settled there. In the late 1940s, the number of expellees offset the decline in the resident population because of war losses, and the total population increased by 14 percent.


The Society and Its Environment
The inflow, however, was matched by a steady outflow of refugees from the Soviet occupation zone to the West. The movement of Germans from east to west consisted primarily of young people of working age, a fact that accentuated the prevailing negative demographic trends. By 1950 some 1.6 million had migrated to the western zones. Between 1950 and 1961, the refugee flow continued at a rate of 100,000 to 200,000 annually. Workers were attracted by the economic opportunities open to them in West Germany, and in the early 1950s, they and their families formed the majority of emigrants. By the late 1950s, a growing proportion of those leaving were professional people and students whose skills were sorely needed for internal development. By 1961 approximately 2.5 million had left. To stop the exodus, the communist authorities built the Berlin Wall in August 1961. The Wall effectively sealed off the best escape route open to disenchanted East Germans, thus halting the mass movement of people to the West. After its construction, the number of refugees entering West Berlin and West Germany fell drastically. In addition controls and restrictions on those allowed to visit the West were tightened considerably. Although restrictions have been loosened since the conclusion of the Four Power Agreement on Berlin (Berlin Agreement) in 1971, pensioners have been the only group allowed relatively free access to the West. Until 1986, young people, professionals, and the technically skilled were denied opportunities to visit the West except under the strictest of controls.

Population Structure and Dynamics
Population structure and dynamics in East Germany have been seriously affected by historical and political developments. The birthrate increased from 16.5 live births per 1,000 population in 1950 to 17 in 1970 but thereafter declined steadily to 10.8 in 1975. After a slight upward trend in the late 1970s, this downward trend continued in the 1980s. In 1980 the birthrate was 14.6 per 1,000; by 1985 the birthrate had fallen to 13.7 per 1,000. In 1986 the East German regime took some measures to stimulate the birthrate. The state granted working mothers a paid "baby year": a paid leave of absence until the child was one year old immediately following a twenty-six-week leave for pregnancy and maternity. The state also granted all working mothers with two or more children a paid absence of up to six weeks per year so that they could take care of sick children. Marriage rates have fluctuated over the years but, like birthrates, generally declined after reaching a peak of 11.7 marriages per 1,000 population in 1950. The number of marriages reflected changes 67

East Germany: A Country Study
in the sex ratio and the small proportion of the population that fell in the marriageable age bracket. Since the 1970s, women have tended to marry at a younger age; the marriage rate in 1985 was 7.9 per 1,000, slightly higher than in the 1960s. Divorce was common. In 1985, with 3.1 divorces per 1,000 population, East Germany had one of the highest divorce rates in the world (see table 2, Appendix A). The death rate in East Germany has been high for Europe, although the high rate has resulted primarily from an unfavorable age structure. In fact, infant mortality rates dropped dramatically. going from 48.9 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1955 to 10 in 1984. Similarly, the life span of the population increased in 1985 and stood at seventy-five years for women and sixty-nine years for men. Death rates increased from 11.9 deaths per 1,000 population in 1950, to 13.6 in 1960, and to 14.1 in 1970. By 1985 the death rate had declined to 13.5 per 1,000 population. Historical trends and population dynamics have interacted to produce a lopsided sex and age structure. Since the war, the country has had a large dependent population. In 1985 approximately 18 percent of the population was of pensionable age (men sixtyfive years and over and women sixty years and over). This number was a marked increase from the 14 percent that fell into such a category in 1950. At the same time, the declining birthrate affected the proportion of the population under the age of fifteen. As a result of the slight increase in the birthrate in the late 1970s, the proportion of the population under the age of fifteen stood at 19 percent, which exceeded the proportion of the pensionable age-group by 1 percent. The economically active population was about 63 percent.

Settlement Patterns
In 1985 East Germany had an average population density of 154 persons per square kilometer. Densities ranged from 57 persons in the northern district of Neubrandenburg to 312 in tl~e southern industrial city of Karl-Marx-Stadt (formerly Chemnitz). In the north, where soils are of generally poor quality and few towns of historical significance are found, the population was rather sparsely distributed. In the south, where rich loessial soils provide attractive farmland and major mineral deposits are found, the population was denser and was concentrated in and around urban-industrial centers. Major transportation routes bypass the northern third of the country. There are few large industrial centers outside of newly developed coastal ports, and the quality of the land is such as to favor forests, pastureland, and mixed extensive-intensive agriculture. 68

The Society and Its Environment
By far the most important port city is Rostock, whose 1985 population was 244,444. Rostock was developed into a major center after the war in order to compensate for the loss of strategically located ports. Stralsund and Wismar were also developed into port cities and in 1985 were sizable municipalities of 75,480 and 57,465, respectively. In the central third of the country, East Berlin overshadows all other cities in terms of its size and its political and economic significance. It had a 1985 population of 1.2 million and an average density of 3,016 persons per square kilometer. Over the years it has acted as a magnet, attracting persons from all over East Germany. It has a higher proportion of the economically active population than any of the other districts but a relatively low proportion of the young. Other important urban centers in the central section of the country include Potsdam, Brandenburg, Frankfurt am Oder, and Magdeburg. Potsdam (139,467) lies to the southwest of Berlin and is a center for light industry. Brandenburg is located west of Berlin and had a 1985 population of 94,862. Frankfurt am Oder lies near the Polish-German border. Although after the war it suffered some loss of inhabitants because of its location, the city's population in 1985 stood at 85,593. With the exception of East Berlin, Magdeburg (population 288,965) is the largest city in the central part of the country. It is located near the inter-German border in a fertile agricultural region and is one of the oldest cities in the country. The southern third is the most densely populated and the most industrialized section of the country. It also contains the most fertile agricultural land. The loessial soils of the B6rderland make the region attractive for farming. Intensive agriculture predominates, and the farm population lives in nucleated village settlements. Most of East Germany's mineral resources are also found in the south, and large cities developed around the deposits. In 1985 the two largest cities were Leipzig (553,660) and Dresden (519,769). Leipzig has lost population since the 1970s but in 1985 was still the second largest city in East Germany. Surrounded by rich agricultural land and easily accessible, it is well known as a publishing and printing center but more particularly as the site of the semiannual Leipzig Fair. Dresden, in the southeast, is a historic city noted for its impressive art collections. In 1985 eight other cities in the south each had populations in excess of 100,000. Cottbus (124,752) specializes in light industries. Dessau (103,569) is the center of an important local food processing industry. Halle (235,169) supports a variety of industrial activities. Farther south lie Karl-MarxStadt and Zwickau, having populations of 315,452 and 120,206, 69

East Germany: A Country Study
respectively. Several large cities are located in the southwest. Erfurt, the largest, had 216,046 residents; also sizable were Gera (131,843) and Jena (107,401). The urban population, i.e., those living in cities or towns of 2,000 or more, constituted about 77 percent of the total populace in 1985. Only 26 percent of the population lived in cities or towns of 100,000 inhabitants. Instead about 30 percent of the population made their homes in small and medium-sized towns of 5,000 to 50,000. World War II greatly affected the rate and direction of urbanization. Many of the more industrialized towns suffered heavy damage during the war and were only slowly rebuilt. In the immediate postwar period, there was also some internal migration away from towns located along border areas. An exception was the city of Eisenhiittenstadt, near the German-Polish border. Constructed in 1950 as a model socialist city, it attracted a sizable population for employment in its iron and steel industries. In keeping with the socialist pattern of urban planning, the state has attempted to develop urban centers throughout the country, to encourage uniform regional development, and to reduce disparities between rural and urban areas. The government has encouraged the development of some industry in the northern and central districts and fostered a diversification of industry in the south in order to revitalize centers with diminished resources and to redirect industrial activity toward priority sectors. In reality, planners have not been successful in controlling and balancing growth between rural and urban areas or among districts. There have been no official restrictions on the internal movement of the population. However, a shortage of housing and difficulties related to switching jobs have prevented large-scale internal migration. Movement has taken place primarily within district boundaries, and residents have gone from rural areas and small urban centers to medium- and large-sized municipalities. In 1985, for example, about 16 persons per 1,000 inhabitants moved across district boundaries.

The German People
East Germany contains no minority groups of any significant size. Most citizens identify themselves as Germans, culturally and linguistically. The government, particularly since the early 1970s, has encouraged the development among its citizens of an East German national consciousness distinct from that of West Germans. It has adopted a "two-nation" policy and has pointed to divergences in culture, language, and socioeconomic development as proof that a single German nation no longer exists. Most East 70

The Society and Its Environment
Germans, however, believe that they share with their West German counterparts a German nationality that is based on a common ethnic heritage and shared historical experiences.

Origins, Language, and Culture
The Germans are the descendants of the Germanic peoples who settled in the north-central plains of Europe sometime around the end of the sixth century B.C. (see Early History, ch. 1). The Romans, who first encountered the Germanic tribes in their conquest of Gaul, called the people of the area the Germani, after certain tribes in Belgium and the Rhineland. Although the Germanic people comprised many tribal groups, the name German has come to describe the people who remained in central Europe. The Germanic people were originally organized into numerous small tribes that gradually united into larger groups in order to increase their political and military power as they spread across and conquered much of Europe. Many of these peoples were the forefathers of present-day European populations. The Franks and Burgundians were the ancestors of the French; the Lombards conquered northern Italy; and the Angles, Saxons, and Danes moved into England and Denmark. Other members of the Saxon tribe, in addition to Bavarians and Thuringians, settled in the northern plains and began to extend eastward along the Elbe and Oder rivers. These early tribal designations survived, and their names designate the territories inhabited by the German people. In a very rough sense, these ancient tribal groupings correspond to modern-day regional groupings, whose distinctive identities are manifested in differing customs, dress, food, and dialects. The Germans, particularly the pre-World War II generation, are extremely proud of their regions of birth and their unique dialects. Regional distinctions have been blurred in East Germany since the end of the war as a result of an influx of those expelled from Eastern Europe, universal and standardized education, urbanization, and greater mobility in general. Generally, regional differences are less pronounced than those between East Germany and West Germany. East Germans are commonly characterized as typifying the Prussian traits of orderliness, cleanliness, and obstinacy (an adherence to rigid Prussian principles), whereas West Germans are more often seen as self-assertive, lively, and fun loving. Of course these are caricatures of reality, but significantly the government has used what regional differences do exist in an effort to create psychological and social boundaries between the two German states. Regional loyalties, however, have not obscured the overarching feeling among Germans that they share a common nationality 71

East Germany: A Country Study
and are bound together ethnically, linguistically, and culturally. National consciousness is especially strong among the Germans, and in the past their strong national spirit has been exploited by ruthless leaders to muster support for expansionist policies. Language is perhaps the most significant expression of a common German nationality. The German language is spoken by millions of people of Europe, including peoples living in the two German states, Austria, Switzerland, and various regions of East European countries. In addition the language has a significance beyond its everyday use. German-speaking people have made important contributions to science, literature, and philosophy. Modern German, which belongs to the family of Indo-European languages, evolved from proto-Germanic or Common Germanic, the collection of languages spoken by the tribes that inhabited the area. Although there are many regional dialects, the language is usually divided into three major subvarieties: low German, spoken in the north; middle German, spoken across the central lowlands; and high German, spoken in the uplands of the south. A standard form of written and spoken German developed very slowly. A move toward standardizing the written language began in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The invention of printing made impractical the continued use of innumerable local dialects that varied in spelling, style, and grammar. The translation of the Bible into German by Martin Luther usually is considered the milestone in the development of a standardized written language. Luther's translation, based on the Saxon dialect, was accepted by the educated classes as a model. The new written German was championed by literary societies and improved upon by grammarians and stylists in the seventeenth century and eventually adopted, in a refined form, by some of the great German writers of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, such as Gotthold Lessing, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and Johann von Schiller. The spoken language, however, continued to reflect the proliferation of local dialects until the end of the nineteenth century. These dialects were the individual's way of expressing identity and independence and therefore were carefully preserved. As commerce, travel, and communication in general increased among the various towns and regions of Germany, the numerous dialects became increasingly restrictive, and a standard spoken language began to evolve. The schools and the media were especially instrumental in pressing for a standard form of German. The standard spoken language is today based on the pronunciation of educated northern Germans. Most Germans write and speak the standard form of German with little difficulty, although dialects continue to be 72

The Society and Its Environment
used among family and friends and on informal occasions. (Differences in dialect are based on divergences in pronunciation, use of expressions, intonation, syntax, and the meaning given to specific words.) Like all living languages, German is constantly influenced and modified through interaction with regional dialects and foreign languages. The influence of French, English, and various Slavic languages is apparent in the adoption of loanwords and idiomatic expressions. The Germans have initiated purification programs at various periods in modern history aimed at eliminating all traces of foreign influence from the language. In addition to a common ethnic heritage and language, the German people share certain social values. The German world view and value system are products of Teutonic pagan cosmology, JudeoChristian tradition, and modern eighteenth- and nineteenth-century philosophies. The pre-Christian conception of the world pitted the bravery and stoicism of man against the harsh and oppressive forces at work in the world. A thread of tragedy ran through life, but it was blended with romanticism and mystical idealism. Lutheran Christianity, the religious tradition that most profoundly influenced German thinking, emphasized individual morality and conceived of man as essentially frail and full of guilt. Man could cleanse himself only through penance and devotion to the Almighty. The rationalist systems of Immanuel Kant and Georg Hegel represented the culmination of Enlightenment philosophies. Materialism and atheism lay at the basis of Karl Marx's philosophy and economic views. Friedrich Nietzsche was a forerunner of twentieth-century existentialist thought. These different and, in many cases, contradictory religious and philosophical currents have produced a German who is stereotypically characterized as inward looking, vulnerable, sorrowful, and full of self-doubt. He combines the sober qualities of industry. intelligence, honesty, obstinacy and cleanliness with a certain sentimentality and gaiety. He is extremely disciplined and exhibits a penchant for order and authority. He admires courage and physical and moral strength. There is a certain validity in this character description insofar as it is based on a common set of experiences and traditions. As with all stereotypical descriptions, however, it constitutes a distortion of reality when applied to the individual.

The German Question Today: One Nation or Two?
Until the 1970s, the governments of both East Germany and West Germany went to great lengths to preserve the concept of a united Germany. Both cast themselves in the role of national protector;


East Germany: A Country Study
both claimed to embody all that was good in the German culture and heritage and to speak for all German people; and both purported to be working toward the reunification of divided Germany. At the same time, officials in the two Germanies initiated policies aimed at developing a base of popular loyalty to their separate governments. This necessarily meant implementing certain policies that were contradictory to the goal of unification. Nationhood, national identity, and nationalism became concepts defined by official policy and manipulated to affirm the legitimacy of the state. The balance struck by each of the governments between an apparent desire for unity and the development of a separate "state consciousness" is at the heart of the "German question."

Official Policy
The evolution of official policy on the German, or national, question (as the policy toward reunification came to be known) can be roughly divided into three periods. During the first period, from 1949 to 1961, East Germany was strongly committed to reunification and sought rapprochement with West Germany on the basis of perceived "national commonalities." However, Walter Ulbricht, first secretary of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED), also sought to keep East Germany internationally isolated as a means to force East Germans to turn inward and begin a program of internal socialist development. Unification (a subtle change in terminology to reflect growing divergences) was still the ultimate goal, but, according to prevailing policy, the adoption of different socioeconomic systems had resulted in the creation of two German states, and reconciliation would be more difficult to achieve. The second period of East German policy ran roughly from the building of the Berlin Wall in 1961 to the replacement of Ulbricht by Erich Honecker as party chief in 1971. The signing of the Berlin Agreement in 1971 and of the Basic Treaty in 1972 marked the beginning of a third shift in policy (see Honecker and East-West Rapprochement, ch. 1). The broad outlines of this policy were expressed in the term Abgrenzung (demarcation- see Glossary). East German leaders contended that the two diametrically opposed socioeconomic systems had led to changes in culture, language, and worldview and that it was no longer possible to speak of one German nation. Unification as a policy goal was abandoned altogether. The evolution of policy toward West Germany can be summarized as changing from togetherness and cooperation in the 1950s, to coexistence in the 1960s, and to separation in the 1970s and 1980s. (Ironically this shift paralleled a reverse trend in West 74

The Society and Its Environment
German relations vis- t-vis East Germany and more generally in superpower relations.) East German thinking on the "German question" likewise changed from affirmation of one indivisible nation, to the idea of two states within one nation, and finally to the declaration of' two separate nations. The 1949 constitution of East Germany referred to Germany as "an indivisible democratic republic" and noted that there was "only one German citizenship." Throughout the 1950s, East Germany and the Soviet Union kept open the door of reunification and even made political overtures for closer cooperation with the West. In 1952 the Soviets were prepared to support a united but neutral Germany in order to deter West Germany from rearming and entering the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). East Germany and the Soviet Union continued efforts to draw West Germany into some sort of "national compromise" even after the latter joined NATO in 1955. East German proposals were never seriously considered; Western policy dictated the international isolation and nonrecognition of East Germany. During the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s, the East German regime began to focus on internal socialist development as a prerequisite for unification. The success of the socialist system became the test "of every real German patriot." Socialist development meant the collectivization of agriculture, the nationalization of industry, and the implementation of a highly centralized planning system modeled after the Soviet system. The Berlin Wall was erected in 1961 to stop the outflow of talented and skilled labor, and the New Economic System was launched in 1963. The country consequently began to enjoy a period of relative prosperity. The new self-confidence of the regime was reflected in the changing official attitudes toward and pronouncements on the German question. Confederation was still advanced as an option in the early 1960s, but later in the decade officials began to speak of the existence of two separate states within one German nation. East German citizenship was established in 1967. The state secretariat for all German affairs became the state secretariat for West German affairs. Finally, a new constitution was promulgated in 1968, institutionalizing the change in policy. East Germany became "a socialist state of the German nation" (Article I), "faithful to the interests of the German people and the international obligations of all Germans" (Article 6). It sought equality in recognition and international status and supported "the step-by-step rapprochement of the two German states until the time of their unification on the basis of democracy and socialism" (Article 8).


East Germany: A Country Study Detente between the superpowers and the initiation of West Germany's policy of Ostpolitik (see Glossary) sotught to bridge the growing gap between the Germanies through the promotion of contacts at the people-to-people level. East German officials reacted with caution and suspicion. The sense of confidence inspired by the economic successes in the 1960s had not quieted the basic insecurity of the regime. Consequently, despite Soviet -ommitmeni to d6tente with the West (which includud closer cooperation between the two Germanies), Ulbricht resisted entering into any cooperation agreements with West Germany. He was removed from power and replaced in 1971 by Honecker as party chief. Shortly thereafter East Germany and West Germany signed the 1972 Basic Treaty, paving the way for the normalization of relations. The agreement was a compromise to the sensitivities of both governments. West Germany succeeded in promoting contacts between Germans in the two states without officially recognizing East Germany. (Relations between the two were still characterized as inner-German from the West German perspective.) In September 1973, East Germany gained de facto international status and was admitted to the United Nations, along with West Germany. To compensate for the drawing together of the two states, however, East German officials implemented a domestic policy of Abgrenzung. On a practical level, this took the form of internal vigilance against influences from and exposure to the West. On a more abstract level, it meant increased efforts toward the development of a distinct state or national identity. In the mid-1970s, the official East German view was that one German nation no longer existed. The Abgrenzung policy-and the two-nation concept derived from it-culminated in 1974 in several important amendments to the 1968 Constitution (see Constitution of 1968, ch. 4). All references to the "German nation" were eliminated, references to unification were deleted, and the country's commitment to socialist internationalism and its "irrevocable" ties to the Soviet Union were forcefully and directly asserted. In the mid-1980s, this policy of Abgrenzung continued to characterize relations with the West. In addition officials have attempted to reinforce the two-nation concept among the population by the manipulation of cultural and ethnic symbols. Development of an East German National Identity The Honecker regime recognized the importance of national feelings and the strength of ethnic, linguistic, and cultural ties among the German people. Likewise, the regime was aware that legislative and policy changes do not necessarily lead to changes in 76

The Society and Its Environment
public attitudes, behavior, and values. Part of the program of mobilizing popular support and constructing a socialist society, therefore, aimed at developing a new "national consciousness." The regime targeted primarily three areas for change. First, it attempted to alter the basis for shared historical experiences through the selective interpretation of German history. Second, it encouraged the development of linguistic differences in the standard language. Third, it attempted to mold a new "socialist personality"-and hence shape a new value system-through intensive socialization. According to the official view, East Germany embodies all that is positive and progressive in the German past, while West Germany is a continuation of a reactionary past. The Weimar Republic is seen as the logical predecessor of the East German state, and historical figures from Germany's socialist past (Marx, Friedrich Engels, Rosa Luxemburg, and Karl Liebknecht) are honored as the principal national heroes (see Weimar Republic, ch. I). In addition selected military, literary, and musical figures are accorded a prominent place in East German history because of their "progressive" ideas. These include famous Prussian generals and military theoreticians such as Gerhard von Scharnhorst, Gebhard von Bhiicher, Carl von Clausewitz, and August Gneisenau, as well as reformers such as Karl, Freiherr vom Stein, and Karl August von Hardenberg. (The Order of Scharnhorst is the highest East German military decoration.) Also included are cultural figures such as Goethe, Schiller, and Johann Sebastian Bach. In 1976 at the Ninth Party Congress of the SED, leaders urged historians to help develop an East German national identity and socialist consciousness by broadening the definition of the "progressive past" and by making greater use of national history. As a result, a critical re-examination of certain periods of history once considered reactionary has taken place. Prussian history, for example, had been condemned for its militaristic tradition, but in recent years it has been the object of closer study. Historical figures either ignored or considered unacceptable have been rehabilitated. In the 1970s and 1980s, Luther and Otto von Bismarck, whom the regime had previously criticized, have been re-evaluated. Luther has been incorporated into the "socialist heritage" of East Germany. Since 1980 the regime has regarded Luther as a progressive who challenged the power of the Roman Catholic Church with theology, the only weapon available to him. Since the mid-1980s, Bismarck has also received more favorable treatment, both because he advocated good relations with Russia and because he is seen as having ended the fragmentation of Germany and paved the way 77

"Lutherhaus" in Eisenach. Damaged by bombing in 1944, the structure needed.full restoration after the war. ;edmin Courtesy V. ,effre

for the blossoming of German economic development. Richard Wagner, once disparaged in official circles because of his popularity among the Nazi leadership, has been rediscovered. Albert Einstein, earlier ignored by the leadership, was honored in 1979 on the hundredth anniversary of his birth. Finally, the study of history has been encouraged among the population through the organization of local historical societies, tile opening of museums, the building of statues, and the preservation and restoration of historical landmarks and monuments. The emphasis on certain elements in the German past is meant to convey to East Germans the feeling that they share not only common historical roots but also a common destiny. Officials have also encouraged the development of a standard language that can be distinguished from the standard German spoken in West Germany. They have pointed to the already existing divergences in the language to substantiate their claim that two separate nations have developed. Indeed, a number of changes are apparent in the German language as a result of the long separation of' East Germany and West Germany. They are not as far reaching or as deeply implanted, however, as most Western scholars originally thought. Changes have resulted primarily from the introduction of political and technical jargon into the language and 78

The Society and Its Environment
the heavy reliance on abbreviations and acronyms. Certain terms have assumed special political and emotional significance, and others have become politicized because of their use as slogans. Economic and technical terms, many of which presume an extensive knowledge of science and economics, are used frequently in official publications and documents. (Officials point to these changes as proof of social progress.) Acronyms are used widely to describe economic enterprises and political organizations, and their use, in turn, has necessitated the periodic publication of directories to guide people through the maze of terms. The impact of these changes on everyday speech is difficult to determine, but there is little to suggest that official jargon has influenced general public usage. Language is slow to change. Communications between East Germans and West Germans have continued despite the separation of the two states and in the 1980s have grown as a result of the easing of travel restrictions. The Western broadcasting media are also widely listened to and viewed by the East German public. The shaping of a socialist personality is the single most important objective of socialization in the country. The educational system, mass organizations, communist party, media, and production committees and worker groups of the enterprises all aim to develop within the individual the qualities associated with a socialist personality. According to SED leaders, that personality blends creativity, intelligence, and industry with a sense of responsibility, collective spirit, and commitment to the goals of socialism. There are many aspects to the socialist personality, the most fundamental of which are the socialist consciousness and socialist morality. Consciousness in this case implies a knowledge of MarxismLeninism as interpreted by the regime and involvemcnt in the political life of the state. The individual who displays a socialist consciousness is one who studies official ideology and party doctrine, understands the basis of productive relations, and actively takes part in the construction of a socialist society by working to fulfill production quotas and joining in political activities. Morality, in this instance, implies a personal sense of obligation and responsibility toward one's fellow workers, a collective spirit, integrity, and trustworthiness. An individual's willingness to use his or her full range of talents for the good of society and a commitment to realize the fullest potential are also aspects of the socialist personality. With the exception of its ideological component, the concept of a socialist personality embraces many of the character traits and values traditionally admired by Germans. Thus authorities have been able to tap traditional respect for authority, discipline, hard work, and efficiency as part of the development of a socialist


East Germany. A Country Study
personality. The more the socialist values have been compatible with traditional values, the more the regime has been successful in enforcing its value system and standards of behavior. Public Attitudes on National Identity The extent to which East German citizens have developed a separate national identity is difficult to determine. Generally proof for and against an emerging East German national consciousness is based on the impressions of journalists or scholars who have traveled to East Germany and on a handful of opinion polls and survey samples of questionable reliability. Those who believe that a new national consciousness has developed or is developing argue that the building of the Berlin Wall forced East Germans to come to terms with political realities and either passively accept the regime or actively seek a place within the system. Meanwhile the economic success of the 1960s and early 1970s gave the people a sense of pride in certain socialist accomplishments. These included an educational system considered to be one of the finest in the world, a package of social services and programs that was relatively impressive, job security, and a standard of living that topped that of other East European countries. Given the acute shortage of labor, many opportunities were available for the person with the "proper" socialist credentials, and those who proved their political loyalty were amply rewarded. Most important, a new generation of East Germans had gradually replaced the older generation. Close to half the population in the mid-1980s had been born since 1945 and close to a quarter since 1960. These young East Germans have been exposed only to communist rule. They have not been allowed to interact extensively with their counterparts in West Germany. And they have been the object of an intensive socialization campaign beginning in the schools and youth groups and continuing through the work organizations. Opinion polls and surveys to some extent have supported the impressionistic accounts of an emerging national consciousness. Many of the polls from the 1960s revealed that the population showed growing support or loyalty to the regime. Many people felt that they were materially better off since the construction of the Wall. Those under forty years of age were most likely to consider East Germany an independent state and to favor recognition by West Germany. An equally compelling case can be built, however, against the emergence of a distinctive national consciousness among the East Germans. Proponents of this view refer to the fragility of a loyalty 80

The Soctety and Its Environment
based solely on material well-being. Any worsening of the economic outlook is likely to have a negative impact on popular attitudes toward the regime. Despite official encouragement to measure its own well-being against that of other socialist bloc countries, the population continues to compare its standard of living with that of the people of West Germany, where the quality of life continues to be noticeably higher. In addition, East Germans have no freedom to choose the political system under which they must live, a fact that undoubtedly colors many citizens' view of the regime. Every year hundreds of persons risk their lives in attempts to escape to the West. The presence of Soviet troops is a constant reminder of dependence on the Soviet Union. Although travel restrictions eased in the 1970s, East German students and the economically active were until the mid-1980s, for all intents and purposes, denied travel to the West except under the strictest of controls, and internal restrictions were placed on citizen contacts with visitors from the West. In the mid- 1980s, common influences on national consciousness continued to exist. East Germans have easy access to Western media, particularly West German television, and the influx of Western visitors since the early 1970s has ensured that at least some sense of a common German identity would be preserved. Public opinion polls and surveys can be cited to support the arguments of those who believe that as of the mid-1980s a distinct East German national consciousness has not yet been achieved. A study from the late 1970s, for example, found that about 80 percent of the citizens considered themselves part of an all-German nation. Another poll found that over one-half supported eventual unification and that such support was strongest among the young. A poll from 1975 refuted earlier surveys from the 1960s that claimed East Germans were beginning to evince a growing loyalty toward the regime. Like the earlier polls, the 1975 study found that just over 60 percent considered themselves loyal citizens; moreover, only a quarter of the sample claimed to be strongly loyal, while just over a third claimed they had merely accommodated prevailing conditions. The remainder were either opposed or indifferent to the regime. Another poll revealed that some three-fourths of the population supported closer contacts between East Germany and West Germany. In the mid-1980s, the debate over the deployment of intermediate-range ballistic missiles in Europe led to the reinforcement of an all-German sentiment in East Germany. This debate led citizens of East Germany and West Germany to feel that they had a special role to play in preventing the outbreak of war. However, 81

East Germany: A Country Study
this feeling of pan-German sentiment was essentially reactive in nature, that is, it was bound up with the specific circumstances of the missile deployment. In general the evidence suggested that East Germans recognized that they were citizens of a separate state but also considered themselves part of a larger German community that included those living in both Germanies.

Minority Groups
In the mid-1980s, minority groups constituted less than 1 percent of the population of East Germany. At various periods through history, minorities living in Germany have been persecuted. The most systematic and gruesome attempt to eliminate racial and ethnic minorities occurred under Adolf Hitler in the 1930s and 1940s. Since World War II, the governments of both Germanies have introduced special measures designed to protect the minorities living under their administrations. The East German Constitution, for example, provides for the protection of minority cultures and languages and guarantees freedom to profess a religious creed. The Sorbs, a Slavic people who have a culture dating back to the sixth century, are the largest surviving minority in East Germany. In 1984 the Sorbs numbered about 34,000 people. They speak a Slavic language known variously as Sorb, Wendish, or Lusatian, and they share a culture rich in folk traditions, songs, and dances. Most live in and around the cities of Cottbus, Bautzen, and Hoyerswerda, which are located southeast of Berlin near the Polish and Czechoslovak borders. In the postwar period, the Sorb minority received special (sometimes preferential) treatment from the communist regime. In the early 1950s, the East German government, with Soviet encouragement, contemplated setting up an autonomous Sorb state. The plans, however, gained little support from either the German or the Sorb population and never materialized. The Office of Sorbic Culture was established to introduce Germans to the Sorb cultural heritage and to preserve and foster the development of the Sorb language. In the mid-1980s, schools in areas with a Sorb population had a specially designed curriculum that emphasized aspects of the Sorb culture. Instruction was offered in the Sorb language, and German was taught as a second language. By and large, however, the population is equally fluent in both languages, and the Sorbs are well integrated into the general population. In the mid-1980s, the only other minority group was the small Jewish community. In 1986 its numerical strength was estimated at several hundred, with approximately 400 Jews professing their faith. About 80 percent of those Jews who remained in East Germany 82

The Society and Its Environment
were over sixty-five years old. East Berlin had the largest Jewish community. The Jews who remained in Germany were primarily survivors of the Holocaust. They were free to practice their religious and cultural traditions, and they had their own organization, known as the Union ofJewish Communities in the GDR (Verband der Jiidischen Gemeinden in der DDR).

Social Structure
East Germany, according to its Constitution, is a "socialist state of workers and peasants" in which "all political power is exercised by the working people." Theoretically, the people exercise their power through socialist ownership of the means of production. In other words, the workers, through the SED and government organs, control and coordinate the use of social and economic resources and wealth for the public good. According to the ideology, in the perfect communist society there would be no exploitation of one person by another, and class distinctions based on ownership of property and material goods would not exist. The communist leaders who assumed control of the government after World War II took upon themselves the task of transforming society from a capitalist system based on private ownership to a socialist (and eventually communist) system based on collective ownership. They inherited a prewar social system stratified into three relatively distinct social classes. Power, wealth, and prestige resided in a small upper class of large landowners (the remnants of the Prussian nobility of an earlier period), wealthy industrialists and entrepreneurs, intellectuals, and top government officials and military officers. The middle class was composed of businessmen, public officials, academicians, professionals, merchants, artisans, and medium-sized landowners. It, in turn, was divided into an upper middle and lower middle class, depending on income, education, and occupational status. The largest social grouping was the lower class, which consisted of urban workers, farmers, and agricultural laborers. Social structure was fairly rigid; birth was the primary criterion for membership in the upper class. It was possible, however, to rise in the social hierarchy through marriage, education, or achievement in such areas as politics or the arts. In order to carry out the restructuring of society, immediately after the war East German officials implemented programs aimed at "de-Nazification" of society and socialization of the means of production. Officials in government and elsewhere who had cooperated with Nazi authorities were removed from their positions and replaced by loyal communists. The estates and businesses of wealthy landowners and industrialists who were accused of supporting the 83

East Germany. A Country Study
Nazi regime were confiscated. Industries and private enterprises were nationalized and/or brought under the umbrella of state control, and agricultural lands were initially redistributed among rural workers and later consolidated into collectives. By the early 1960s, these programs were largely completed. During this time, many members of the former upper and upper-middle classes fled to the West, while those who remained made the adjustment to the new communist regime. East German officials consider theirs to be a transitional society that still contains elements of the past social order. The primary function of party and government leaders is to reconcile those differences that still exist and eventually to mold the various social groupings into a collective whole. The Constitution, in fact, notes that "the inviolable foundations of socialist society are provided by the firm alliance of the working class with the class of cooperative farmers, the intelligentsia, and other sections of the population." As of 1987, it was difficult to describe the stratification of society in other than general terms. Official data from 1986 broke down the socioeconomic structure of the labor force as follows: workers and salaried employees, 89 percent; members of cooperatives (including farm, craft, and lawyer cooperatives), 9 percent; owners of semistate enterprises and commission dealers, 0.3 percent; private farmers and gardeners, 0.1 percent; and other privately employed persons (including craftsmen, merchants, and professionals), 1.7 percent. These figures showed that the percentage of workers, salaried employees, and members of cooperatives had substantially increased, while the percentage of private farmers, craftsmen, merchants, and self-employed professionals had decreased. Other official data riaicated that of the workers and salaried employees, 836,374 were agricultural workers. This figure is a substantial decrease from 1965, when 1,041,960 individuals worked in agriculture. Ignoring the official structural breakdown of the population, however, it was possible to speak in the broadest terms of four social strata. These included the workers (the so-called backbone of the socialist society), the political elite (those who gained their power and influence through loyalty to the SED), the intelligentsia (those who achieved a relatively comfortable position in society as a result of their specialized knowledge or creative abilities), and privately employed persons (those who were generally part of the prewar middle class and who continued to practice their trades and professions under the communist regime). Stratification, particularly at the elite level, was based primarily on technical/intellectual competence and political power. Education and loyalty to the SED were the main means of upward mobility. 84

The Society and Its Environment The Working Class
In 1985 workers constituted 89 percent of the labor force, or about 7.9 million people. Consistent with communist ideology, however, official figures make no distinction between mental and manual labor. Instead all "workers" -laborers, clerks, technical and scientific personnel, and professionals-are considered part of a nonantagonistic social class. East German workers have not always supported the reforms carried out in their name. In the postwar period, the widespread and rapid nationalization of industry and collectivization of agriculture caused some severe dislocations and hardships and were not popular among the people. The workers' revolt of 1953 began as a protest against the high cost of living and the imposition of higher work norms and blossomed into a political protest that was crushed only with the aid of Soviet troops. Until the erection of the Berlin Wall in 1961, industrial workers and farmers constituted, in absolute numbers, the majority of refugees fleeing to the West. While their motives for leaving may have been related more to economic conditions than to ideology, their departure in such large numbers was a testament to the repressive policies of the regime. Over the years, and particularly since the 1960s, the East German leadership has concentrated on gaining the support and loyalty of the working population and on restructuring society through the implementation of comprehensive social programs in the areas of housing, health, welfare, and education (see The Educational System, this ch.). In addition, officials have focused on raising the standard of living and satisfying the demands of workers for more and better consumer goods. The Constitution guarantees the citizen health protection, improved living conditions, care in old age, and dwelling space for his or her family. The record of the government in these areas has been mixed. Housing The quality and quantity of housing have been serious problems for many years. Most housing was owned by the state, and rents were controlled. In the mid-1980s, new apartments rented for about one GDR mark (for value of the GDR mark-see Glossary) per square meter; older units rented for even less. East Germany, however, has suffered from a shortage of housing. Construction was accorded low priority in the 1950s and early 1960s; hence older housing was allowed to fall into disrepair, and few attempts were made to modernize apartments. Even as late as the early 1970s, close to 80 percent of dwelling units were of prewar vintage. More than half had no indoor plumbing. 85

East Germany. A Country Study
During the 1960s, authorities began to recognize the need for housing construction, but little attention was given to design or comfort; the government was primarily interested in cutting construction time and costs. Housing was given top priority at the eighth and ninth party congresses, and since the early 1970s the construction of new housing and the renovation of older dwellings have formed the main thrust of East Germany's social policy. The shift in emphasis is apparent in the number of new dwellings constructed annually. In 1950 only 31,000 new units were built; in 1960 the number had risen to 80,000. Since 1971, however, over 100,000 new or improved units have been constructed each year. From 1980 to 1984, close to 946,000 new homes were constructed, and over 333,000 units were modernized. The 1986-90 Five-Year Plan called for construction and modernization of 1,064,000 units and committed the country to solving the housing problem by 1990. Beginning in the 1970s, an attempt was also made to build more attractive and spacious housing. Prefabricated dwellings, popularized in the 1960s because of low cost and quick construction time, still formed the majority of new housing, but more attention was given to design and aesthetic qualities. All dwellings built after 1970 had indoor ,)aths and showers, and most had hot water and central heating. Despite the housing boom of the preceding decade, many problems remained as of the mid-1980s. The persistence of a housing shortage meant that allocation of housing created a measure of discontent. Housing, particularly in the large urban areas, was difficult to obtain, and young couples looking for their first home were often forced to wait two or three years before a unit became available. Housing was assigned on the local level by housing commissions. Priority was generally accorded first to families with children, then to married couples, and finally to single persons. Because of the housing problems, moving from one city to another could be a frustrating experience. Available housing was advertised in newspapers and listed with local authorities. A family then attempted to match its requirements with those of a family in another city and exchange units. Housing, however, has been used to entice workers into certain jobs or sectors of the economy and to reward loyal service to the state; therefore, highly skilled workers and members of the technical intelligentsia and political elite have been given preference in assignments and receive the choicest housing.

Health and Welfare
In the areas of health and welfare, the country also has shown mixed results. As of 1987, workers were covered under a compulsory 86

The Society and Its Environment
social insurance program administered by the FDGB. (Self-employed persons and members of farm and craft cooperatives had a slightly different program administered by the state.) The program included free medical treatment, coverage for accidents and disabilities, unemployment compensation, and retirement benefits. The worker contributed 10 percent of his or her monthly income, up to 60 GDR marks, toward financing the program. The amount was matched by a contribution from the employing enterprise. In the past, funds have been inadequate, and the state has had to finance the program. In the mid-1980s, health care was free for citizens covered under the program, that is, for the majority of the population. The improvement of health care over the years has been evidenced by the dramatic decline in infant mortality rates, which went from 38.8 per 1,000 live births in 1960 to 10 per 1,000 in 1984. The incidence of major diseases has also decreased. For example, diphtheria went from 10.5 cases per 10,000 in 1950 to complete elimination in 1985. Typhus decreased from 3 cases per 10,000 in 1950 to a total of 27 cases in 1985. However, using the incidence of reported tumors as an indicator, it appears that the cancer rate in East Germany has been increasing. In 1955 there were 22.4 reported tumors per 10,000. By 1983 that figure had risen to 31.9 per 10,000. During the 1950s, the country suffered a serious shortage of doctors and other trained medical personnel. Roughly one-fourth of the country's physicians emigrated to the West before the building of the Berlin Wall. During the 1960s and 1970s, however, a new generation of doctors, nurses, and dentists was trained. In 1985 there were 22.8 doctors per 10,000 population, or about 37,000 total, which was a considerable increase over the 14,500 doctors practicing in 1960. Most physicians worked for the state in health centers, outpatient clinics, and individual medical practices. Only a small number-an estimated 1,000 to 2,000-were still allowed to practice privately, although some state doctors unofficially accepted private patients for special treatment. In 1985 health policy centered on preventive medicine and health education. The health-care network included 590 polyclinics, 998 outpatient facilities, and 1,602 state-sponsored medical practices. The 3,000 physicians and dentists working directly in state enterprises provided medical treatment to some two-thirds of the work force. Although health care in general has steadily improved, the provision for and care of the elderly remain a problem. As of the mid-1980s, pensions were very low, and retirees were at the bottom of the income scale. The average monthly income for a retired person in 1970 was 199 GDR marks; as of 1984 it was 448 GDR 87

A district polyclinic in Parchim Courtesy Frank Kurt Cylke

marks. Although the pension paid to retirees was considerably less than the average monthly income of the working population, the difference between the two was lessened by the fact that the pensioner did not pay social security or other taxes, which, in the early 1980s, could cost the average wage earner 200 GDR marks per month. Wages and Prices Wage policy is an important part of East German social policy. Minimum wages are set by the government and have been allowed to rise gradually over the years. The minimum was raised to 400 GDR marks in 1976; about one-seventh of the work force earned the minimum. The average monthly income of a worker rose from 558 GDR marks in 1960 to 1,140 GDR marks in 1985. Income differentials existed, however, depending on the sector of the economy in which the worker was employed. In the mid-1980s, the income of workers in retail trade averaged approximately 26 percent lower than the pay of workers in energy, fuel, and metals. Differences in income also reflected levels of training, education, and responsibility; the differences were likely to remain as long as it was necessary to attract workers into priority industries. Material incentives, in the form of cash bonuses and extended holiday time, were used to encourage increased productivity. Pricing policies are meant to achieve the same effect as wage policies. During the 1970s, the government committed itself to maintaining stable prices on staple goods and providing luxury items to meet consumer demand. As of the early 1980s, food prices had remained frozen for more than a decade, and rents were set at extremely low levels. Since prices have not been allowed to reflect actual economic conditions (in particular the slowdown in economic 88

Automobiles line up at a gas station in Weimar Courtesy V. Jeffrey Gedmin

growth), the government has had to subsidize certain products to keep prices low and stable. In the mid-1980s, subsidies for food, rent, and commuter fares amounted to one-third of' total state expenditures. In 1983 the government spent over 12 million GDR marks to support food prices. From 1980 through 1983, rent subsidies averaged 8.3 million GDR marks a year. These subsidies strained the state's budget, which in turn led to a lower rate of increase. For example, between 1979 and 1980 subsidies for commuter fares rose by 7 percent. By contrast the rate of increase from 1982 to 1983 was 3.2 percent. Because of the price-support policies of the government, the standard of living rose in the early 1980s. Per capita consumption of meats and meat products and fresh vegetables and fruits increased while consumption of potatoes and cereals decreased (see table 3, Appendix A.) Many luxury goods were made available to the consumer, and consumers proved to be anxious to purchase them despite exorbitant costs and lengthy delivery times. A television set, for example, cost about twice the monthly income of a worker, yet the percentage of households owning a television rose from 49 percent in 1965 to 93.4 percent in 1985. In 1965 only one-quarter of households had refrigerators and washing machines; by 1985 there were 91.8 washing machines per 100 households and 99 refrigerators per 100 households. In 1985 a car cost eight or nine times a worker's 89

East Germany: A Country Study
average monthly income, and delivery took up to six years. Only 8 percent of households owned an automobile in 1965, but almost 46 percent of households had acquired one by 1985. In comparison with their East European neighbors, East German workers enjoyed a comfortable standard of living in the mid-1980s, although it was not as high as that of West German workers. The government, however, was expected to have difficulty maintaining the standard of living. As more goods become available, consumer demands and expectations are likely to multiply. Ultimately the economic situation will affect the pricing and rate of production of consumer goods.

The Political Elite
About 1 percent of the population belongs to what may be termed the political elite. This group includes party leaders at the national, district, and county levels; key persons in the state government and in industry, media, and education; and the heads of mass organizations. In their hands rests the bulk of political power and influence. They form the vanguard of society and purport to rule in the name of the working class. The communist party in East Germany, the SED, is not, technically speaking, a mass political party. Yet the SED has a membership considerably larger than its counterparts in other East European communist countries. In 1986 SED membership (including candidates) was 2,304,121, or 13.2 percent of the adult population. One out of every eight citizens over the age of eighteen belonged to the party. SED leaders have long boasted of their success in bringing workers into the party and in promoting to leadership positions those whose social origin is the working class. According to the SED's own statistics, the proportion of workers in the party has grown steadily and in 1984 reached 58.1 percent. The proportion of intelligentsia and cooperative farmers within party ranks has consequently declined, and in 1984 these two groups constituted 22.4 percent and 4.8 percent of the membership, respectively. Despite many differences in age, education, and social background, party members form a special social group, to some extent, in that they share a consciousness of belonging to a privileged section of the population. Career advancement is tied closely to party membership, and most top positions in government, industry, media, and education are held by party members (see The Socialist Unity Party of Germany, ch. 4). The rank-and-file membership in reality wields little political power and has almost no voice in decision making and policy formulation. Out of the over 2 million party members, approximately 90

The Society and Its Environment 500,000 belong to the Nomenklatur (see Glossary), who are appointed to leading positions in the party, state, and economy. Members of the Nomenklatu, make sure the system works, i.e., that policy directives are carried out, that production quotas are filled, that the educational system produces students equipped to fill priority positions, that the proper "socialist outlook" is reflected in the media, and so forth. Membership in the political elite is based on a combination of party loyalty, training and on-the-job performance, and personal friendships. Party loyalty is by far the most important criterion. It involves a blend of devotion to Marxist-Leninist principles, loyalty to the state, commitment to socialist internationalism, and strict adherence to party discipline. An individual's record of political activity and length of service in the party and related mass organizations in large measure determine the likelihood of rising to a top leadership role within the party hierarchy. In the late 1940s and 1950s, party loyalty tended to displace all other considerations in selection of candidates for leading positions. Longtime party activists, most of whom had been active in the Communist Party. of Germany before World War II and many of whom had received their training in the Soviet Union, were placed in control of the government after the war. Loyalists with little or no practical administrative or technical experience took charge of major industries. These members of the "old guard" tended to be party dogmatists. Since the 1960s, a growing emphasis has been placed on performance-related criteria. It is no longer enough to be a loyal party activist; the aspiring candidate must also possess a certain amount of talent and skill, oftentimes based on intensive scientific and technical education. The professionalization of the party leadership is apparent in the educational profile of the Politburo. In 1984, of twenty-five full and candidate members of the Politburo, fifteen had an elementary school education, five had completed high school or technical school, and 20 had a university degree. In 1946, by comparison, thirteen of the fourteen Politburo members had only an elementary school education. In early 1987, almost threequarters of the Central Committee members (including candidates) were graduates of a university or technical school. Elite membership is linked to the web of personal friendships and political alignments that party activists weave as they rise in the hierarchy. There is an "old-boy" network that operates within the SED, particularly at the highest levels of party leadership. Thus, for example, Ulbricht, first secretary of the SED from the time of its establishment to his retirement (removal) in 1971, surrounded 91

East Germany: A Country Study
himself with trusted friends who had spent the war years with him in the Soviet Union. Honecker, his successor, has selected his friends and associates from the Free German Youth (Freie Deutsche Jugend-FDJ) apparatus to fill key political positions. The members of the political elite display many of the characteristics of a new class, a class that has replaced the old landed aristocracy and upper class of the prewar era. Members of the political elite share a conscious social identity and a commitment to communist ideology. While tensions sometimes surface between the older, more dogmatic party leaders and the younger, more pragmatic members, both have a prevailing commitment to the system and a vested interest in maintaining it. Differences relate primarily to style and not ideology. Individual commitment is generally strengthened as cadres rise in the political hierarchy. Members of the political elite also share a common life-style and receive certain benefits by virtue of their position. They are materially better off than the population at large; they have access to comfortable housing; and their children are assured a place at a university. In addition they are permitted freer travel abroad. The political elite is a relatively stable group. Unless serious doubt is cast upon a member's party loyalty or unless the member's job performance is very poor, his or her position remains fairly secure. At the same time, membership in the elite is not closed. Virtually anyone can advance in the party hierarchy by displaying a balanced blend of political loyalty and talent. As time passes, however, the political elite may become a self-perpetuating social class as members attempt to secure for their children the same privileges they themselves have enjoyed.

The Creative Intelligentsia
The creative intelligentsia is broadly defined as those involved in artistic creativity, artistic expression, or teaching and research in the humanities. Since its inception, the East German regime has attempted to form an intelligentsia imbued with socialist values and responsive to regime needs. In return for service to the state, the regime has granted members of the creative intelligentsia many privileges, including the right to travel to the West and access to excellent housing facilities. As a result of these privileges, the creative intelligentsia has become increasingly isolated from the rest of the population. The East German government does not publish data on the creative intelligentsia. However, it is possible to gauge the growth of this stratum by using statistics that depict increases in the kinds of institutions where these individuals work. For example, in 1951 92

A student theater group at an open-air stage outside Weimar Courtesy V.Jeffrey Gedmin

there were twenty-one universities in East Germany; in 1984 there were fifty-four. In 1951 there were 77 theaters in the country; by 1984 that figure had risen to 188. The number of music teachers increased from 1,427 in 1966 to 2,153 in 1984. Museums devoted to art, literature, the theater, and music rose from 34 in 1965 to 122 in the mid-1980s. These figures suggest that the regime has devoted significant resources to the expansion of the kind of forums where the new "socialist" culture may be seen, heard, or taught. Of necessity the regime has had to staff these new institutions with individuals it has attempted to inculcate with socialist values. The Technical Intelligentsia The technical intelligentsia is a broadly formed social group comprising those who, in the words of one observer, "directly or indirectly do the brain work" of managing the country. Thomas A. Baylis, a social scientist who has studied the East German technical intelligentsia, estimated the numerical strength of this group at about 3 percent of the total population in the early 1970s (7 to 8 percent of the work force). He included in this group "the chief governmental planners and economists; bureaucrats with important economic, technical, or scientific responsibilities; industrial managers; physical scientists and mathematicians; engineers; and educators and journalists in scientific, technical, and economic 93

East Germany.- A Country Study
fields." The political elite has recognized the utility, indeed the necessity, of the technical intelligentsia in helping to develop and run the economy and society. The Constitution calls upon the intelligentsia to ally itself with the working class and other sections of the population for "the planning and management of social development in accordance with the most advanced scientific knowledge." Two subgroups constitute the technical intelligentsia: the old intelligentsia, which is made up of members of the prewar upper middle class, and the new intelligentsia, which includes a generation of technocrats trained under the watchful eye and guidance of the political elite. During the 1940s and 1950s, party leaders replaced many of the old intelligentsia who held positions in education, government, and the legal professions. In these areas, standards of performance were relaxed so that politically reliable and tested individuals could assume key positions. Scientists, technicians, managers, engineers, and planners could not be replaced as easily. Authorities, therefore, sought to co-opt these more technically minded individuals. Initially an effort was made to re-educate them politically, that is, to inspire in them a loyalty to the government and to Marxist-Leninist ideals. Ultimately the aid of the intelligentsia was purchased by offering members of the group attractive material rewards and high social status. For example, in the mid-1970s special individual contracts were concluded with those whose skills were most sorely needed. Base salaries ranged from 4,000 to 15,000 GDR marks per month. (This was five to twenty times the average monthly income of an industrial worker at that time.) In addition an attractive package of benefits was tailormade for the technical intelligentsia. They received priority in housing; their children were admitted to the universities; bonuses and extra paid holidays were stipulated in their contracts; and they were provided with pension plans guaranteeing incomes of up to 90 percent of their preretirement incomes. Private shops and clubs were established to cater to their needs. To satisfy a personal need for recognition, honorary titles, e.g., Honorary Chief Engineer, Honored Inventor, Distinguished Scientist of the People, and medals were awarded for a job well done. These perquisites set the old technical intelligentsia apart from the general population. The wooing of the old intelligentsia also created a certain amount of tension and frustration within the party ranks. The older dogmatists distrusted the intelligentsia because of their lack of political commitment; the younger cadres resented the inequitable distribution of benefits. East German leaders consider the new technical intelligentsia to be a stratum rather than a social class, that 94

The Society and Its Environment
is, members of a nonantagonistic group drawn from and committed to the working class and separated from it only insofar as their work involves intellectual labor. The long-term approach of the political leadership has been to create and train a new generation of managers, scientists, and technicians who were politically "reliable" as well as technically competent. This new intelligentsia was to embody the true "socialist personality," reflecting the interests of the working class and living in a spirit of collective unity. Bonuses and benefits were similar to those extended to the old intelligentsia. The state also awarded the new intelligentsia various kinds of honorary titles similar to those given to the old intelligentsia.

Institutions and Organs of Society
The Family
The traditional German family was patriarchally organized. The father was the head of the household and the ultimate authority on all family matters. The mother centered her life around the three Ks-Kirche, Kinder, t.nd Kiiche (church, children, and kitchen). Children were expected to submit to the will of their parents and ideally to reflect the qualities of obedience, responsibility, and respect. The typical family unit was the nuclear household, but ties with the extended family were maintained, and a close relationship existed with relatives. War, industrialization, and urbanization had important implications for family organization and patterns of relationships. In the postwar period, the communist regime has treated the family as the smallest collective unit of society and emphasized its role in the political socialization and education of children. The family is protected and its relationship outlined in the Family Code of 1965 and in the Constitution. The Family Code is considered a fairly progressive document. It delineates the relationships between husband and wife and between parents and children, recognizes the equality and mutual respect of the sexes, and stipulates the joint responsibility of the parents with regard to the education of their children. The Constitution places "marriage, family, and motherhood . . . under the special protection of the state." Women are given complete equality with their husbands under the law. Either the wife's or the husband's name may be chosen as the family name. Husbands are expected to support and encourage their wives in pursuing an education and/or employment opportunities. Both spouses jointly own property earned after the marriage, although each retains the rights to any possessions acquired before marriage. 95

East Germany: A Country Study
The legal age of marriage is eighteen for both men and women. Marriage ages have declined over the years, and by the early 1980s the average marriage age for both partners was in the mid-twenties. Marriage must be performed by an authorized official of the state and be properly registered. In the mid-1980s, divorce rates were relatively high; divorce occurred primarily in marriages that were in their second to seventh years. Women initiated an increasing number of divorce suits. Common causes of divorce were infidelity, incompatibility, and drinking. A divorce was not difficult to obtain if neither spouse objected. The couple simply filed an application and paid a fee determined on the basis of the couple's income. In 90 percent of divorces, the mother retained custody of any children involved in the suit. Most young couples have preferred a small family of one or two children. A liberal abortion law, promulgated in 1972 amid protest from religious circles, permits abortion upon the request of the mother. Before the enactment of the law, over 100,000 illegal abortions were estimated to have been performed annually. As of the mid-1980s, information on contraceptive methods was available to the public, and women could obtain birth control pills at no cost. At the same time, motherhood is encouraged and accorded an honored role in society. The state is concerned about declining birthrates and has implemented a program of benefits and services designed to make motherhood more attractive (see Population Structure and Dynamics, this ch.). An elaborate network of daycare centers provides care for the child while the mother is at work. In 1984 there were 6,605 year-round day nurseries with room for 296,653 children. These nurseries provided care for 63 percent of eligible children. The working woman/mother is highly regarded by society. Work is considered a social responsibility as well as a right. A woman's right to work is, in the first instance, an ideological commitment on the part of the state and the communist rulers, but it is also a necessity given the shortage of manpower. Yet for all the relative equality in the workplace, in the mid-1980s the majority of household chores still fell to women. Surveys have indicated that women assumed most of the burden for cooking, cleaning, washing, and shopping and that they performed these tasks in addition to their regular employment outside the home. One of the major social responsibilities of parents is the education of their children. The Constitution notes that "it is the right and the noblest duty of parents to raise their children to become healthy, joyous, competent, universally educated, and stateconscious citizens." Parents teach their children by providing role 96

The Society and Its Environment
models and by actively participating in their formal education. In the mid-1980s, parents' councils operated within the schools to review and discuss curriculum, instruction, and educational standards. Official propaganda continually emphasized the need for conformity in values between the home and collective institutions in society. Parents were admonished not to confuse the child by allowing conflicting standards of behavior within the family. The family continues to influence strongly the life of the average citizen. Despite the social, economic, and political changes that have occurred, family ties remain solid and close; some observers suggest that ties within the extended family are even stronger in East Germany than in West Germany. Observers also have noted a tendency for East Germans to turn inward toward the family as one of the few areas of "private" life left open to the individual.

Mass Organizations
The so-called mass organizations are an integral part of society. They serve to integrate the individual into the social and political life of the country and are designed to produce the unity of interests that communist rulers claim is at the base of a Marxist-Leninist system of government. The mass organizations, however, are very much the stepchildren of the communist party. They have been created from above to control, supervise, and mobilize the public and to provide channels through which party policies can effectively be implemented. In their function as mouthpieces for party members, the mass organizations, however, must refrain from producing significant conflict or deviating from the basic outlines of party policy. Workers and the Free German Trade Union Federation The largest and most significant of the mass organizations is the Free German Trade Union Federation (Freier Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund-FDGB). In the mid-1980s, approximately 96 percent of all workers (including manual laborers, white-collar workers, and members of the intelligentsia) belonged to the FDGB. As of 1985, membership was about 9.4 million, and the union had 61 deputies in the People's Chamber (the national legislature). The FDGB is affiliated with trade unions in other countries through its membership in the World Federation of Trade Unions. All trade unions are united under the FDGB, the only federation of unions allowed to operate in the country. The FDGB is organized on a territorial basis, much the same as the SED. Workers in enterprises employing twenty or more individuals are organized in so-called free trade unions. Members at the local levels 97

East Germany: A Country Study
elect union officials, who in turn elect representatives at the next higher levels. The FDGB has a congress, a cciordinating executive committee, and a presidium to formulate policies. Theoretically the FDGB operates on the principle of democratic centralism; but in reality, as is true in the SED, power is structured hierarchically, and decision making and policy formulation are the preserve of those at the top. Changes in policy are only infrequently initiated from the bottom up; more often than not, party and union officials carry out the policy directives handed down from above. Just as the SED has its committed corps of cadres, the FDGB has a component of about 2 million union activists who ensure that policies are implemented. Union posts at the local levels are filled by volunteers, and nonparty members perform about 75 percent of union tasks. Leadership positions, however, are held by members of the SED Nomenklatur. The organization and ideology of the FDGB are predicated on the basis of an overall unity of interests between workers and the state. The Constitution states that "trade unions are independent" and that "no one may limit or obstruct their activities." In fact the FDGB's close association with the party does not allow it to play a real bargaining role or to strike for specific demands. Because a commonality of interests does not always exist in reality, the FDGB on occasion finds itself in an anomalous position. On the one hand, it is supposed to represent the interests of the workers, which may include fighting for better working conditions, higher wages, and more realistic production norms. On the other hand, it is very much an auxiliary of the SED, and as such it is used to control the work force, enforce higher production quotas, and increase worker productivity. Nonetheless the union is an important part of the worker's life. The work place is the center of the average citizen's existence much more so in East Germany than in Western countries. The local union and the enterprise form a collectivity and offer the worker a variety of educational, cultural, and social activities. In addition, the FDGB administers the social insurance program and provides vacation centers and packaged holidays for workers. In 1984 there were 1,163 "holiday homes" with a capacity of 135,889 beds. Housing, libraries, discount shops, clubs, and recreational facilities are provided through the worker's enterprises. Through their activities, the union and the enterprise permeate every aspect of the individual's life. Like other mass organizations, the FDGB has a socialization function to perform. In the mid-1980s, it cooperated with schools and enterprises to instill in the worker an appreciation of the social value 98

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of work and an awareness of the social duties incumbent upon a purported owner of the means of production. Contacts between factory workers and children were encouraged through special visits of children to factories and through practical work experiences. In factories employing more than fifty people, dispute commissions (social courts) handled discipline problems, settled conflicts, and generally enforced norms of behavior. Commissions were composed of workers approved by the FDGB; the commissions were a fairly effective form of social control because workers were responsible for judging their fellow workers. Worker productivity was encouraged through the example of showcase production units and model employees who were dubbed "Hero of the Work." The regime used these showcase units to rationalize increases in production quotas. After the mid-1970s, the government appeared to allow the union a greater voice in decision making and policy formulation. In other words, there appeared to be some official support permitting the union to function more as a representative of worker interests than as a conduit for party policies. The bounds of permissible criticism and discussion, however, were likely to remain extremely narrow and not to obscure the overriding authority of the SED leadership. Young People and the Free German Youth East Germany considers its young people its most important asset. As a result, the party and government have expended a great amount of attention and resources on socialization of youth through schools and youth groups. Since the inception of the regime, youth activities have been strictly controlled and monitored by SED party officials. Youth organizations outside of those officially sanctioned by the regime have not been permitted. By far the most important youth organization has been the FDJ, founded in 1946 and subsequently brought under the control of the SED. As of 1984, the FDJ had a membership of approximately 2.3 million, or 83 percent of all youth in the eligible age group (fourteen through twenty-five). Membership was voluntary, but for anyone who wanted to advance politically or professionally, membership was a practical necessity. Strong pressures were exerted on young people through the schools and peer groups to join the FDJ, and the organization's near total control over recreational facilities, resort areas, and entertainment ensured a high membership. Perhaps more important, the FDJ handled university entrance examinations and scholarship programs. The most active members, therefore, were found among students and soldiers; nearly 80 percent of each group belonged to the FDJ. 99

Young Pioneers camp near Erfurt

Courtesy V. Jeffrey Gedmin
Participation of young industrial workers and farm youth was considerably lower. In the case of the industrial workers, the trade unions provided an alternative to FDJ membership. The organization of the FDJ is patterned after that of the SED. The Youth Parliament is convened periodically, and the Central Council is elected to coordinate activities between parliament sessions. As in the SED, the real center of power lies in the FDJ bureau and secretariat. Most often the leadership positions are held by loyal SED members who might be considerably older than the rank-andfile membership. In 1985 the FDJ held thirty-seven seats in the People's Chamber and was well represented at the local and district governrhent levels. The FDJ is an important ground for the recruitment of SED party cadres, and many key party officials have received their initial training in the FDJ. The FDJ is a member of the World Federation of Democratic Youth and cooperates with its counterparts in other communist countries through youth congresses and youth friendship projects. Such cooperation is an important way of developing an international socialist outlook. The Ernst Thilmann Pioneers Organization, known as the Young Pioneers (Junge Pioniere-JP), is an auxiliary of the FDJ. In the mid-1980s, membership in the JP began with entry into school at around age six and continued through age fourteen. In 100

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1985 the JP has approximately 1.3 million members. This figure represented roughly 85 percent of all eligible children. The regime has used theJP to reinforce the political values and social behavior taught in the schools. The SED considers the JP to be especially instrumental in developing the collective spirit that is considered such an important part of the "socialist personality." The groups are headed by teachers and JP leaders (normally FDJ recruits), who teach the children to work toward and identify with collective goals. Ultimately the JP provides an effective, but controlled, source of peer pressure. Norms, values, and standards of behavior are shaped and guided by group leaders. TheJP also provides educational, cultural, and sports programs for the young. Two other youth-oriented organizations deserve mention. The Society for Sport and Technology (Gesellschaft ffir Sport und Technik-GST) was established in 1952. In the mid-1980s, the GST provided paramilitary training through sports activities such as parachuting, marksmanship, and other skill-oriented programs. The GST also held military sports games (Wehrspartakiade). In the 1985 games, over 8,000 contestants competed in 280 "premilitary" and "military sporting" events, which included stripping machine guns, hand grenade target practice, and sharpshooting. A second group, the German Gymnastics and Sports Federation (Deutscher Turn-und Sportbund der DDR), has trained athletes for sporting competition and has been the organization responsible for producing Olympic competitors. In 1985 this organization claimed over 3.5 million members. A total of 10,249 sports clubs catered to the group's members. Despite the near total integration of youth into the political and party organizational network, a sizable minority of young people, particularly those in their teens and early twenties, have elected not to join official youth organizations. Many resent the system of controls and monitoring of youth activities that are evident in the schools and elsewhere. FDJ members, for example, are selected to monitor classes and youth activities. In addition, young people in East Germany, regardless of their involvement in youth groups, have been affected by some of the same pressures as youths in other industrialized countries. Thus reports of juvenile delinquency and alcohol abuse in the larger urban areas have grown more common, and there has been some indication that crime has increased in the 1980s (see Crime and Punishment, ch. 5). Officials have complained that the current generation of youths tends to be spoiled. Because they did not live through the troubled years of the war and the postwar period, they allegedly do not understand what serious hardship really means. Party leaders, on occasion, 101

East Germany: A Country Study have chided young people for lack of political enthusiasm and their growing preoccupation with the acquisition of material goods. For their part, young people have frequently complained about the restrictions placed on travel abroad and the artificiality and lack of creativity in society. The New Sorrows of Young W, a play produced in 1973 based on Goethe's famous novel The Sorrows of Young Werther, was an enormous success among the young. It tells the story of a young dropout who experiences a sense of alienation and despair that eventually leads to his suicide. Seemingly, young people want the opportunity to use the skills they have learned in school and to be challenged in their work. In general, Western observers have noted that youths in the 1970s and 1980s tended to be more critical and willing to question government policies within limits than had young people in preceding decades. Some evidence suggests that party leaders had allowed those limits to expand. The FDJ, which had always been an instrument of party control, was also allegedly becoming a forum for the discussion of youth problems and concerns. The limits of permissible criticism, however, seemed likely to remain narrow. Women and the Democratic Women's League of Germany The Constitution guarantees equality of the sexes. Women are afforded equal rights before the law and "in all spheres of social, state and personal life." The East German record in the area of women's rights has been good. Women have been well represented in the work force, comprising about half of the economically active population. As of 1984, roughly 80 percent of women of oi king age (between eighteen and sixty) were employed. The state has encouraged women to seek work and pursue careers and has provided aid to working mothers in the form of day-care centers and generous maternity benefits (see The Family, this ch.). The state also has made a concerted effort to provide educational opportunities for women. The number of women having a university or technical school education has increased over the years. Of the students enrolled in universities and colleges in 1985, about 50 percent were women, and most of these were involved in direct study (as opposed to extension and evening study). This figure represented an increase from 25 percent in 1960 and 35 percent in 1970. Female enrollments in technical schools also rose. In 1960 women accounted for 29 percent of the student body, by 1970 their proportion had grown to 49 percent, and in 1985 they represented about 73 percent of all enrollees. Special courses were designed for women who already held jobs but wished to increase their level of skills, and state enterprises offered programs that provided women leave time 102

The Society and Its Environment
and paid up to 80 percent of their wages so tkey might pursue further education. In the mid-1980s, women wee less well represented in positions of political power. In 1984 about one-third of the deputies to the People's Chamber were women. However, in December 1984, only 19 of the 153 SED Central Committee members were women. In early 1987, there were only two women among the twenty-seven full and candidate members of the Politburo. The Democratic Women's League of Germany (Demokratischer Frauenbund Deutschlands-DFD) is the official mass organization for women. Established in 1947, it originally spearheaded the campaign for equal rights for women. The SED has used the DFD to politicize women, to make them aware of their rights and responsibilities in the construction of a socialist society, and to encourage them to participate in the productive life of the country. The DFD had 1.5 million members as of 1985 and operated through 17,904 local organizations. Membership was ostensibly open to all women regardless of their social background or political orientation. As with other mass organizations, however, leadership positions were filled by SED loyalists, and DFD activities fell under the strict control and supervision of the party. The DFD had thirty-four seats in the People's Chamber. After the late 1960s and 1970s, the influence of the DFD among women declined. As women became integrated into the work force, they began participating in the trade unions instead of the DFD. In this sense the DFD succeeded in its original goals and hence became outmoded. Consequently the thrust of the organization changed by the 1980s, and its main concern became the part-time woman worker and the nonworking woman. Critics contend that the shift in goal orientation turned the DFD into a social organization for housewives.

The Educational System
In the mid- 1980s, the education system comprised preschool education (kindergarten) for children from three to six years of age; a compulsory ten-year polytechnical education for all children of ages six through sixteen; postpolytechnical education, which consisted of either vocational training leading to entry in the work force or extended general education leading to the university; and higher education at a special technical institute or university. Attendance at kindergarten was not mandatory, but the majority of children from ages three to six attend-d. The state considered kindergartens an important element of the overall educational program. The schools focused on health and physical fitness, development of socialist values, and the teaching of rudimentary skills. 103

East Germany: A Country Study
The regime has experimented with combined schools of childcare centers and kindergartens, which introduce the child gradually into a more regimented program of activities and ease the pains of adjustment. In 1985 there were 13,148 preschools providing care for 788,095 children (about 91 percent of children eligible to attend). Compulsory education began at the age of six, when every child entered the ten-grade, coeducational general polytechnical school. The program was divided into three sections. The primary stage included grades one through three, where children were taught the basic skills of reading, writing, and mathematics. The primary stage also introduced children to the fundamentals of good citizenship and, in accordance with the 1965 education law, provided them with their "first knowledge and understanding of nature, work, and socialist society." Instruction emphasized German language, literature, and art as a means of developing the child's expressive and linguistic skills; about 60 percent of classroom time was devoted to this component. Mathematics instruction accounted for about 24 percent of the curriculum and included an introduction to fundamental mathematical laws and relations. Another 8 percent was devoted to physical education, which comprised exercises, games, and activities designed to develop coordination and physical skill. Polytechnical instruction was also begun at the primary level and consisted of gardening and crafts that gave the child a basic appreciation of technology, the economy, and the worker; about 8 percent of classroom time was allotted to such instruction. An intermediate stage in the child's education began in grade four and continued through grade six. The study of the Russian language was introduced at this stage and consumed about 12 percent of classroom time. Natural and social sciences also became part of the curriculum and together with mathematics formed about 26 percent of instruction time. Another 44 percent of instruction was taken up with German literature, language, art, history, and geography. The remainder was divided between sports and polytechnical instruction. During this stage of the young person's education, the political-ideological content of the curriculum becomes increasingly important. The curriculum emphasized the connection between education and work, and it acquainted pupils in a more detailed way with the life of society and with work, science, technology, and culture. The development of a socialist personality, especially a socialist attitude toward work, was a major objective. The final stage of polytechnical schooling comprised grades seven through ten. Polytechnical instruction included courses in technical drawing, socialist production, and productive work. The pupil spent one day per week in practical training, working alongside 104

The Society and Its Environment
regular employees at a nearby factory or agricultural cooperative. About 14 percent of the curriculum was devoted to polytechnical instruction during this stage. Science education formed about 22 percent of instruction time, and courses covered biology, chemistry, physics, and astronomy. Mathematics consumed roughly 15 percent of the classroom period; the Russian language, 9 percent; and German art, literature, language, and history, about 34 percent. A second foreign language, generally English, was introduced at the upper grade levels. The polytechnical curriculum gradually accorded a prominent role to science and technology, reflecting the regime's need for technically trained individuals. Throughout the entire educational program, the regime emphasized instruction in "socialist values." The curriculum balanced scientific knowledge with ideological instruction to produce "a scientific view of life" according to Marxist-Leninist philosophy. Theory was related to practice through polytechnical training, and the child was expected to grasp a basic understanding of productive relationships. The educational system's major goal was producing technically qualified personnel to fill the manpower needs of the economy. The government guaranteed employment to those who cohtpleted the mandatory ten-year program. Ostensibly the studen't was free to choose his or her occupation, but career choices were often guided by government plans and policies. In 1985 there were 5,864 general polytechnical schools with a total student population of 2.1 million. The average class size was twenty students. Educators and specialists developed the curriculum, textbooks, and teacher manuals, which, however, were closely controlled and had to be approved by the appropriate authorities. The Politburo of the SED made most policy decisions regarding the educational system. The main task of the Ministry of Education, which oversees the kindergartens and polytechnical schools, was making certain that SED policies were implemented and that instructional materials reflected the proper philosophical orientation. Upon completion of the compulsory ten-year education, the student had essentially three options. The most frequently chosen option was to begin a two-year period of vocational training. In 1985 about 86 percent of those who had completed their ten-year course of study began some kind of vocational training. During vocational training, the student became an apprentice, usually at a local or state enterprise. Students received eighteen months of training in selected vocations and specialized in the final six months. In 1985 approximately 6 percent of those who had completed their polytechnical education entered a three-year program of vocational 105

East Germany: A Country Study
training. This program led to the Abitur, or end-of-school examination. Passing the Abitur enabled the student to apply to a technical institute or university, although this route to higher education was considered very difficult. In 1985 East Germany had a total of 963 vocational schools; 719 were connected with industries, and another 244 were municipal vocational schools. Vocational schools served 377,567 students. A final option was the extended polytechnical education, which prepared only a minority of students for higher education. In 1984 approximately 8.3 percent of those completing their general schooling continued in extended polytechnical programs. In the past, children vere selected for extended schooling after the eighth grade, but as of the early 1980s the selection was generally made after the tenth grade. In effect the extended schooling was a college preparatory program. The curriculum continued the general education provided at the lower grades, but instruction was more intensive and geared specifically to university entry. The extended schools had instruction through grade twelve. A thirteenth year was spent in practical training. This year was meant to instill in the student an appreciation of labor and to prevent an elitist attitude from emerging among those who went on for higher education. After passing the Abitur examination and completing a year of practical training, the student could apply to either a university or a technical institute. Applicants were judged primarily on their scholastic achievements and political attitudes. In the past, applicants from working-class backgrounds were given priority for positions at the university and institutes. A Workers' and Peasants' Faculty was established at each university to help prepare the prospective student for entry into universities. During the 1950s, the proportion of students of working-class origin steadily increased and was over 50 percent around 1960. The proportion declined, however, during the 1960s, and by the end of the decade workingclass students constituted roughly 38 percent of the university population. The special faculties were closed in the late 1960s. Under Honecker, there was a renewed effort to attract working-class students to the universities, but no figures were avilable on the proportion of such students at institutions of higher learning in the mid- 1980s. In 1985 East Germany had 54 universities and colleges, with a total enrollment of 129,628 students. Women made up about 50 percent of the student population. Courses in engineering and technology headed the list of popular subjects. Medicine, economics, and education were also popular choices. There were 239 technical institutions, with a total student population of 162,221. About 106

Karl Marx University in Leipzig; in the background the "Hochhaus" of the university with its thirty-fourfloors, built in 1973 Courtesy V Jeey Gedmin 107

East Germany: A Country Study
61 percent of the students studied full time, while the remainder enrolled in correspondence study or took evening classes. The three most popular fields of study at the institutes were medicine and health, engineering and technology, and economics. Courses at the university and technical institutes consisted primarily of lectures and examinations. Completion of the program led to a diploma or license, depending on the field of study. As of the mid- 1980s, higher education was very inexpensive, and many of the textbooks were provided free of charge. Full or partial financial assistance in the form of scholarships was available for most students, and living expenses were generally minimal because most students continued to live at home during their course of study. Germans have a high regard for education, and the regime has generally supported young people who have wanted to upgrade their level of skills through further training or education. Ironically education has become one way in which young people seek to achieve social recognition. Higher education has also produced a generation that is oftentimes overqualified for available jobs. The government began restricting the number of positions available at the universities and technical institutes during the late 1960s, making competition for entry extremely stiff.

Religion and Religious Organizations
Official statistics on the religious affiliation of the population have not been available since the 1960s. Most East Germans, however, are Protestant. In the mid-1980s, the number of Protestants was estimated to be 7.7 million, or just under half the population. About 7 percent, or 1.2 million people, were Roman Catholics. Other religions accounted for less than 1 percent of the population. According to the Constitution, freedom of religion and worship is the right of every citizen. In reality the regime discourages participation in religious activities, and in the mid-1980s young Christians were often denied access to the best jobs and educational opportunities. Most Protestants in the country are affiliated with the Lutheran churches. In the mid-1980s, there were eight territorial Lutheran churches; three were united in the United Evangelical Lutheran Church in the German Democratic Republic (Vereinigte Evangelisch-Lutherische Kirche in der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik-VELK) and five in the Evangelical Church of the Union (Evangelische Kirche der Union-EKU). Until 1969 the Lutheran churches in East Germany were loosely federated with those in West Germany. The VELK and the EKU, however, split with their West German counterparts in 1968 and the following year established 108

The Society and Its Environment their own Federation of Evangelical Churches in the German Democratic Republic (Bund der Evangelischen Kirchen in der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik-BEK). The East German regime had been pressing for a separation of East German and West German churches for some time as part of its program of developing an East German consciousness and had made the maintenance of relations with West German churches very difficult. Traditionally the Lutheran churches have retained a great deal of autonomy and administrative independence from one another. After the Reformation, the churches were organized on a territorial basis and were marked by differences in theology and ecclesiastical administration. These characteristics have continued into the present. Each of the territorial churches elects its own bishop and has its own synod. Elections and administrative matters are wholly independent from state control. In 1984 the eight territorial churches comprised nearly 7,000 parishes, which were served by approximately 4,000 pastors. There were fifty church-run hospitals, eightynine institutions for the physically handicapped, and many similar institutions. In the early 1980s, the largest of the Lutheran churches was the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Saxony (a member of the EKU). This church had approximately 1,200 parishes, 1,000 pastors, and a reported membership of 2.3 million. In the late 1970s, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Thuringia, a member of the VELK, had 1,587 parishes, 750 pastors, and a membership of about 1 million. The recognition of a common set of problems that needed solutions culminated in a movement toward the unification of the Lutheran churches. Since its inception in 1969, the BEK has provided a federal structure for discussing problems and setting general guidelines, but it has exercised no real control over the member churches and has had little impact on their policy decisions. Moreover the creation of the BEK resulted in organizational redundancy; there were, in effect, three federations or unions: the VELK, the EKU, and the BEK. Each had separate offices, governing boards, and synods. In 1979 the churches decided to merge into one integrated union by 1981. Such a union would exercise greater control on matters of common interest and present a united front in dealing with the government. Several obstacles, however, combined to forestall unification. First, the churches involved followed different teachings, and no resolution had been effected on the emphasis to be given to various interpretations of the faith. Second, the degree of linkage to churches in West Germany and West Berlin remained open. Both the VELK and the EKU had separated from their sister churches in the West, but the EKU had 109

East Germany. A Country Study
maintained structural similarities and closer ties with the West. Finally, there was general disagreement about whether a united front was the best approach to dealing with the government. The Protestant churches are financed through offerings and a voluntary income tax on membership. In the mid-1980s, the churches also owned about 202,400 hectares of land, which the government had not expropriated, and operated 50 agricultural enterprises. A substantial proportion of church financing-about 40 percent-was contributed by churches in West Germany and was used primarily for the renovation of old buildings or the construction of new churches. The government offered support for charitable institutions such as hospitals, homes for the aged, and day-care centers. These institutions provided a welcome supplement to the network of state institutions. In the mid-1980s, the Roman Catholic Church numbered 1.2 million; most of the church membership was located in the south. Many Catholics had originally come from Eastern Europe as part of the population expelled in the postwar period. The church was divided into seven administrative districts that comprised about 830 parishes, which were administered by 1,400 priests. By East European standards, the East German regime has treated the Roman Catholic Church relatively well. The regime has neither subjected the church to extreme repression nor co-opted it. Unlike the Protestant churches, the Roman Catholic Church has maintained its structural ties to the West because most of the church's administrative districts were part of larger dioceses that extended into West Germany and Poland. In the mid-1980s, the church operated 34 hospitals, 118 nursing homes and homes for the aged, 14 homes for the mentally handicapped, 30 children's homes, and 137 parish social service offices. In the mid-1980s, less than I percent of the population professed a faith other than that of the two mainstream religions. There were about 150,000 members of other Protestant denominations, or "free churches." In addition there was a small Jewish community of about 400 and a small community of Orthodox Christians. Relations between church and state have vacillated over the years. In general the state does not tolerate organizations outside of those officially sanctioned by the SED. All organizations within the socialist structure of society are designed to work together in developing a new socialist personality and in restructuring society. The regime, moreover, is committed to an atheistic philosophy that views organized religion as an "opium of the masses" and, consequently, a tool of capitalist societies. 110

The Society and Its Environment
During the 1950s, the state implemented a series of measures aimed at diminikhing the influence of the church. The state gradually assumed control of many of the functions traditionally under the purview of the church. Church youth groups were prohibited, and substitute youth groups under the supervision of the SED were formed, e.g., the JP and the FDJ. Religious instruction was forbidden in the schools and was replaced by the teaching of "socialist morality." Secular and socialist rituals were initiated to rival religious rituals and sacraments. A socialist name-giving ceremony replaced the traditional christening of infants, and a socialist marriage ceremony and funeral service were given official sanction. The most significant of the new rituals, however, was theJugendweihe (youth dedication). TheJugendweihe is an old ritual first performed in Germany in the mid-1800s. It was reintroduced by communist officials in 1954 as the official ceremony marking the entry of the youth into adulthood. Normally theJugendweihe takes place near a child's fourteenth birthday. It is a rite of passage that corresponds to the Christian confirmation or the Jewish bar mitzvah. The child receives political ideological instruction before his or her formal initiation, which includes a vow of loyalty to the socialist state. The churches unsuccessfully resisted theJugendweihe, at first threatening to deny confirmation to youths who had participated in the socialist ceremony. The church, however, was fighting a rearguard action in this instance. By the late 1970s, over 95 percent of all eligible East German youths had participated in the Jugendweihe. Participation was a virtual necessity for any young person who wished to secure a higher education or a good job. Despite the restrictive measures adopted by the regime in the 1950s however, the churches were not the object of brutal repression. Church leaders had fought Nazi fascism during the war, and many had been imprisoned along with communist leaders. A certain amount of mutual respect, therefore, had developed between the two groups. Although some clergy and local lay officials were incarcerated when the communists came to power, no top church officials were jailed, and the regime later released those who had been imprisoned. In the 1960s, Ulbricht made overtures toward rapprochement with the Lutheran Church. The humanistic aspects of Christianity and its commitment to peace were seen as compatible with socialist philosophy. By easing restrictions, the regime hoped to enlist the support of the churches in developing a collective consciousness. In addition, certain church activities, in particular the operation of charitable institutions, were seen as socially useful and deserving of support. The main bone of contention throughout this period 111

East Germany: A Country Study
was the continuation of organizational unity between the churches in East Germany and West Germany. In the 1970s, the Lutheran churches adopted a policy of "critical solidarity" with the regime. In essence this policy translated into accommodation on many issues, but at the same time the churches reserved for themselves the right to speak out on issues that were of vital concern. (The Roman Catholic Church is less vocal than the Lutheran Church.) The government has not always accepted the churches' view of critical solidarity. Rather, it has attempted to draw the Lutheran Church into closer collaboration while at the same time refraining from muzzling church leaders. Relations with the state relaxed considerably after a March 1978 meeting between Honecker and BEK leaders wherein the state made several concessions to the churches. The role of the church as an independent entity was affirmed; building permits were granted for the construction of churches in new towns; promises were made to eliminate discrimination against young Christians; and media time was allotted for religious broadcasts. In the mid-1980s, the peace issue became a wedge between the church and the regime. Because of clerical and lay pressure, the Lutheran Church provided an organizational and spiritual impetus for the independent peace movement in East Germany. Inspired by the Biblical injunction to "beat swords into plowshares," in 1982 the Conference of Governing Bodies of the Evangelical Churches in the GDR advocated disarmament. The church also sought a "social service for peace" instead of military service for conscientious objectors. In the 1980s, the Lutheran Church began to broaden its criticisms of the East German regime to encompass other issues as well. Church spokesmen attempted to link the peace issue with the attainment of justice and regime recognition of human rights. The Lutheran Church began to raise the issue of environmental protection, and in 1986 the church used the nuclear accident at Chernobyl in the Soviet Union to condemn the development of nuclear power in East Germany. These efforts led to a resurgence of interest in organized religion. In the 1980s, popular demand for Bibles soared and far exceeded the output of 44,000 copies a year. Since the early 1980s, young people, especially, have been attending church meetings and concerts with increasing regularity.

Dissent has taken several forms in East Germany. Each year a number of East German dissenters attempt to leave the country, through either emigration or escape. Beginning in the 1980s, there 112

The Society and Its Environment also emerged an organized opposition. Under the auspices of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, one area of group dissent revolved around the issues of peace and the demilitarization of East German society. A second category of dissent involved members of the intelligentsia who were independent Marxists. From 1945 to 1961, a relatively large number of East Germans left the country through emigration or escape. Since the construction of the Berlin Wall, however, the numbers departing have been smaller. According to official statistics, approximately 320,000 persons have left since 1961; the unofficial estimates are much higher. According to some West German estimates, another 400,000 to 500,000 East Germans have applied to emigrate and await exit permits. In 1984 the East German regime allowed over 30,000 people to emigrate, and in 1986 the figure was about 20,000. Successful escapes were few in number. The Wall and the heavy fortifications along the entire length of the east-west border ensured that risks were great for those trying to escape. Nevertheless escape attempts continued. Many of those who escaped enlisted the aid of middlemen or organizations (known as Fluchthilfer) that have made a profession of arranging escapes. The help of these organizations is expensive, and many of those who took advantage of such services were necessarily relatively prosperous by East German standards. This group of refugees has included members of the intelligentsia and professionals. Escape was generally effected by way of third countries where border security was not as tight as in East Berlin. An organized opposition within East Germany emerged only in the 1980s. There are several reasons why organized dissent had failed to appear before this time. Paradoxically the existence of West Germany hindered the persistence of active dissent. In the past, the East German regime had simply exiled activists to West Germany and thereby isolated them from the country. Most notable among those expelled were the singer Wolf Biermann and the independent Marxist thinker Rudolf Bahro. The regime had also used repression to curb dissent. In 1986, according to West German sources, there were 2,000 political prisoners in East Germany. Finally, the regime had been able to co-opt the vast majority of the country's intelligentsia through a combination of privileges and rewards (see The Creative Intelligentsia; The Technical Intelligentsia, this ch.). The roots of the organized opposition involving the independent peace movement go back to the early 1960s, when considerable resistance emerged to East Germany's remilitarization, especially in Protestant circles. In the late 1970s and 1980s, Protestant 113

East Germany: A Country Study activists objected to the introduction, in the summer of 1978, of compulsory pre-military training for fitteen- and sixteen-year-olds. Soldiers, who had fulfilled their military obligation through work in special military construction units, pressured Lutheran Church leaders to support nonviolence and disarmament. In February 1982, the term peace movement began to be used in connection with peace initiatives that originated outside official party or government circles. The initiatives stemmed from a forum organized by the Lutheran Church that challenged the official government view that peace can be maintained only through armed strength. In the mid-1980s, the independent peace movement has sought the formation of a civilian peace service as an alternate to military service and the demilitarization of East German society. In the 1980s, work for peace began to be decentralized and extended to areas outside East Germany's major urban centers. For example, by the mid-1980s the Protestant student community in Rostock had organized a monthly Peace Worship Service. Every six months a "Retreat and Meditation Day" on the theme of peace took place in the Land-church of Mecklenburg. Standing workshops for peace were formed in numerous student communities, and peace seminars, often attended by hundreds of people, were held in KarlMarx-Stadt, Meissen, Waldheim, Zittau, Kessin, and elsewhere. Independent Marxist opposition among the intelligentsia was also present in the 1980s and had attained an importance in East Germany that far exceeded its influence elsewhere in Eastern Europe. Although the independent Marxist group was very small, the regime nevertheless considered such dissent to be very dangerous. This opposition had been inspired by the late Robert Havemann, whose thought, as expressed in Fragen, Antworten, Fragen (Questions, Answers, Questions) and Dialektik ohne Dogma (Dialectics Without Dogma), centered on the gap between the theory and practice of socialism. Havemann advocated a pluralistic socialism inspired by a return to the humanism developed in Marx's early writings. Bahro's Die Alternative, which attacked party and government bureaucracy and called for an organized communist opposition in the socialist countries, had also influenced East Germany's independent Marxists. In the 1980s, these ideas were gaining support among East Germany's young adults, who had been trained in Marxist-Leninist ideology throughout their years in the country's educational system.

In the 1980s, scholars have devoted significant attention to the study of East German society. G.E. Edwards's GDR Society andSocial 114

The Society and Its Environment Institutions ceals extensively with the family, women, youth, and the elderly. Jonathan Steele's Inside East Germany: The State That Came infrom the Cold treats living conditions, social programs, daily life, and education. Henry Krisch's The German Democratic Republic: The Searchfor Identity contains useful information on society, as does C. Bradley Scharf's Politics and Change in East Germany. Roy E.H. Mellor's The Two Germanies: A Modern Geography and Norman J.G. Pounds's Eastern Europe are two valuable works on geography and demography. Gebhard Schweigler's National Consciousness in a Divided Germany is an important contribution to the study of an emerging East German national consciousness, although a number of more recent studies disagree with his conclusion that East Germans are developing a separate identity. Information on the social structure is contained in the works of Peter Christian Ludz, Thomas A. Baylis, and John M. Starrels and Anita Mallinckrodt. The family, mass organizations, and educational system are dealt with in the works of Arthur M. Hanhardt, Jr., Arthur Hearndon, Margrete Siebert Klein, and Harry G. Schaffer. Robert F. Goeckel's "The Luther Anniversary in East Germany" covers the politics surrounding that celebration. B.V. Flow, Matthew Boyse, and Ronald D. Asmus have written fine articles on religion in East Germany. Dissent in East Germany has been covered by Pedro Ramet, MichaelJ. Sodaro, Klaus Ehring, and Roger Woods. Ramet's "Disaffection and Dissent in East Germany" is an especially penetrating article. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Chapter 3. The Economy


Lubbenau power station

THE ECONOMY of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) has developed impressively since its founding in 1949. By almost any indicator, it stands at the top of the socialist world in economic development and performance. The country has the highest per capita income, the greatest number of automobiles and hospital beds per 1,000 inhabitants, the highest labor productivity, and the highest yield in the agricultural sector per agricultural worker. It uses the most electricity and has the greatest number of television sets and radios among member states of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon), all on a per capita basis. East Germany is a major supplier of advanced technology to the other members. In short, it is the most modern and industrialized socialist state. The condition of the economy is all the more remarkable when one considers the circumstances under which it has developed. The country was devastated during World War II. Subsequently Soviet occupation of East German territory placed heavy burdens on the population and resources. In addition, the partitioning of the German lands after the war seriously disrupted the economy. East Germany's heavy industry capacity was very low, and its raw material supplies, except for lignite (low-grade) coal and potash, were almost nonexistent. The fact that the country for many years lacked international recognition as a sovereign state certainly did not contribute to economic growth, and its population loss before construction of the Berlin Wall was a significant drain on labor resources. Explaining the relatively successful economic record achieved by East Germany after these early troubled years is not as easy as many assert. It is clear, however, that the previous level of German industrialization and the existence of a trained and diligent labor force have been important factors in the success story. To this East German leaders themselves would add two other explanations: the socialist character of their system and the help they received from the Soviet Union, particularly after 1953, the year of Joseph Stalin's death. The differing statistical concepts and procedures used by communist and noncommunist economists, both of which have drawbacks, result in differing images of East Germany and the functioning of its economic system. Data calculated on the basis of noncommunist concepts will be identified by the use of such Western terms as gross nationalproduct; East German statistics will 119

East Germany: A Country Study be called official data or identified by such terms as gross social product or national income.

Resource Base
East Germany is a resource-poor and relatively small politicoeconomic entity. It must import most of the raw materials it needs, aside from lignite, copper, and potash. Iron ore deposits are widely scattered in areas unfavorable to mining and have thin seams with an iron content of only 20 to 35 percent. Most of the iron ore, highgrade coal, and oil needed by the country and all of its bauxite, chromium, manganese, and phosphate must be imported. Most cotton and lumber also come from abroad. According to West German calculations, in the early 1980s East Germany was exporting 25 to 30 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP-see Glossary) to pay for these basic materials. Even the country's water supply has been barely sufficient for its needs. However, East Germany is self-sufficient in a number of other minerals: rock salt, fluorspar, heavy spar, stone and earth for building, tin, and raw materials for glass and ceramics manufacture. East Germany's agricultural base is not as large as that of other East European countries; the country has an agricultural area of only 0.4 hectare per citizen. However, its climate and soil fertility are adequate for large-scale production of a wide range of crops and livestock. By the mid-1980s, East Germany's heavy reliance on lignite, the only fuel source it possessed in great quantity, was exacting a heavy price from the country's natural environment, resulting in a high level of atmospheric pollution, particularly from sulfur dioxide. In the 1980s, increasing use of nitrate fertilizers and pesticides was also creating problems. The country has become one of the most polluted regions of Europe. In an effort to combat the growing pollution, the East German government, having long affirmed the importance of environmental protection, was a party to a number of international agreements concerning progressive reduction of harmful emissions. Additional government policies to protect the environment and the country's resources included recycling of materials, energy conservation, and enforcement of already existing regulations.

Labor Force
The population, and therefore the labor force, of East Germany, has always been comparatively small. Prior to the 1960s, when birthrates were relatively high, over 2.5 million people left East Germany for the West. Perhaps half of these individuals were twenty-five years of age or younger. Subsequently the birthrate 120

The Economy
fell, and during the 1970s East Germany, alone among European countries, witnessed a continuing population decline. By the late 1970s, the situation prompted government efforts to promote large families (see Population, ch. 2). According to official East German figures, after World War II the total population fell from around

18.5 million in 1946 to 16.7 million in 1986. The decline occurred
despite the fact that in the postwar years some Germans had had to be resettled from the territories in Eastern Europe that had been part of the Third Reich but that subsequently had fallen within the boundaries of Poland, Czechoslovakia, and the Soviet Union. Beginning in the late 1940s, the East German leadership moved to expand the labor force. First, the government initiated a program to socialize agriculture, reducing the number of people employed in the agricultural sector from 2.2 million in 1949 to less than 1 million in 1970 and to only 874,000 in 1977. In subsequent years, the number of agricultural workers increased slightly, reaching 922,000 in 1985. As a result of the government's policy, well over I million persons became available for employment in other sectors of the economy. Second, and more important, the state effectively mobilized women and brought them into the ranks of the gainfully employed. Whereas in 1949 women had constituted about 40 percent of the labor force, by 1985 that proportion had risen to 49 percent, giving East Germany one of the highest rates of female employment in the world. As a result of this mobilization, by 1985 the East German labor force was a comparatively large segment of the country's total population, standing at about 51 percent. (According to official figures, 64.8 percent of the population was of working age; about 79 percent of these individuals were employed.) In 1975 the proportion of the retirement-age population was 19.8 percent. According to East German statistics, in 1985 this proportion of the population had dropped to 16.6 percent. Nevertheless, in the mid-1980s the country continued to suffer from a labor shortage. The government was attempting to solve the problem through a more efficient use of labor and through the replacement of workers by robots. In the early 1980s, increasing labor productivity was a major priority in economic planning. In 1985 the socialist sector employed 98 percent of the work force. Industry accounted for more than one-third of the total work force, the "nonproductive" sector (such as service industries and the state bureaucracy) employed one-fifth of the work force, and agriculture and trade accounted for one-tenth each. The East German Constitution guarantees to all citizens the right to work, and 121

East Germany: A Country Study
officially there was no unemployment in East Germajny. The country's leaders acknowledged, however, that temporary unemployment could occur as a result of rationalization and restructuring. Although the government was intent upon mobilizing the available labor reserves, it was not insensitive to popular sentiments favoring a shorter workweek. The standard workweek for all workers was reduced to forty-three and three-quarter hours in 1967. In 1977, it was further reduced to forty hours for women and forty to forty-two hours for those working shifts. In conjunction with the government's efforts to raise the birthrate, women received substantial opportunities to work part time and increasingly liberal maternal benefits, including extended leave with pay and further reduction in the workweek (see Population Structure and Dynam-

ics, ch. 2). Economic Structure and its Control Mechanisms
Like other East European communist states, East Germany has a centrally planned economy (CPE), imposed on it by the Soviet Union in the late 1940s, in contrast to the more familiar market economies or mixed economies of most Western states. The state establishes production targets and prices and allocates resources, codifying these decisions in a comprehensive plan or set of plans. The means of production are almost entirely state owned. In 1985, for example, state-owned enterprises or collectives earned 96.7 percent of total net national income. Advocates of CPEs consider this organizational form to have important advantages. First, the government can harness the economy to serve the political and economic objectives of the leadership. Consumer demand, for example, can be restrained in favor of greater investment in basic industry or channeled into desired patterns, such as reliance on public transportation rather than on private automobiles. Second, CPEs can maximize the continuous utilization of all available resources. Under CPEs, neither unemployment nor idle plants should exist beyond minimal levels, and the economy should develop in a stable manner, unimpeded by inflation or recession. Third, CPEs can serve social rather than individual ends; under such a system, the leadership can distribute rewards, whether wages or perquisites, according to the social value of the service performed, not according to the vagaries of supply and demand on an open market. Critics of CPEs identify several characteristic problems. First, given the complexities of economic processes, the plan must be a simplification of reality. Individuals and producing units can be given directives or targets, but in carrying out the plan they may 122

The Economy
select courses of action that conflict with the overall interests of society as determined by the planners. Such courses of action might include, for example, ignoring quality standards, producing an improper product mix, or using resources wastefully. Second, critics contend that CPEs have built-in obstacles to innovation and efficiency in production; managers of producing units, frequently having limited discretionary authority, see as their first priority a strict fulfillment of the plan targets rather than, for example, development of new techniques or diversification of products. Third, the system of allocating goods and services in CPEs is thought to be inefficient. Most of the total mix of products is distributed according to the plan, with the aid of a rationing mechanism known as the System of Material Balances. But since no one can predict perfectly the actual needs of each producing unit, some units receive too many goods and others too few. The managers with surpluses are hesitant to admit they have them, for CPEs are typically "taut," that is, they carry low inventories and reserves. Managers prefer to hoard whatever they have and then to make informal trades when they are in need and can find someone else whose requirements complement their own. Finally, detractors argue that in CPEs prices do not reflect the value of available resources, goods, or services. In market economies, prices, which are based on cost and utility considerations, permit the determination of value, even if imperfectly. In CPEs, prices are determined administratively, and the criteria the state uses to establish them are sometimes unrelated to costs. Prices often vary significantly from the actual social or economic value of the products for which they have been set and are not a valid basis for comparing the relative value of two or more products to society. East German economists and planners are well aware of the alleged strengths and weaknesses of their system of planned economy. They contend that Western critics overstate the disadvantages and that in any case these problems are not inherent in the system itself. They direct their efforts toward preserving the fundamental framework of the system while introducing modifications that can address the problems just noted. The ultimate directing force in the economy, as in every aspect of the society, is the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED), particularly its top leadership (see The Socialist Unity Party of Germany, ch. 4). The party exercises its leadership role formally during the party congress, when its accepts the report of the general secretary (Erich Honecker since 1971; the title of the party chief changed from first secretary to general secretary in 1976) and when it adopts the draft plan for 123

East Germany: A Country Study
the upcoming five-year period. More important is the supervision of the SED's Politburo, which monitors and directs ongoing economic processes. That key group, however, can concern itself with no more than the general, fundamental, or extremely serious economic questions, for it also has the full range of other matters on its agenda. At the head of the government organs responsible for formally adopting and carrying out policies elaborated by the party congress and Politburo is the Council of Ministers, which has more than forty members and is in turn headed by a Presidium of sixteen. The Council of Ministers supervises and coordinates the activities of all other central bodies responsible for the economy, and it may play a direct and specific role in important cases. The State Planning Commission (sometimes called the Economic General Staff of the Council of Ministers) advises the Council of Ministers on possible alternative economic strategies and their implications, translates the general targets set by the council into planning directives and more specific plan targets for each of the ministries beneath it, coordinates short-, medium-, and long-range planning, and mediates interministerial disagreements. The individual ministries have major responsibility for the detailed direction of the several sectors of the economy. The ministries are responsible within their separate spheres for detailed planning, resource allocation, development, implementation of innovations, and generally for the efficient achievement of their respective plans. Directly below the ministries are the centrally directed trusts, or Kombinate. Intended to be replacements for the Associations of Publicly Owned Enterprises-the largely administrative organizations that previously served as a link between the ministries and the individual enterprises-the Kombinate resulted from the merging of various industrial enterprises into large-scale entities in the late 1970s, based on interrelationships between their production activities. The Kombinate include research enterprises, which the state incorporated into their structures to provide better focus for research efforts and speedier application of research results to production. A single, united management directs the entire production process in each Kombinat, from research to production and sales. The reform also attempted to foster closer ties between the activities of the Kombinate and the foreign trade enterprises by subordinating the latter to both the Ministry of Foreign Trade and the Kombinate (see Foreign Trade, this ch.). The goal of the Kombinat reform measure was to achieve greater efficiency and rationality by concentrating authority in the hands of midlevel leadership. The 124

The Economy Kombinat management also provides significant input for the central planning process. By the early 1980s, establishment of Kombinate for both centrally managed and district-managed enterprises was essentially complete. Particularly from 1982 to 1984, the government established various regulations and laws to define more precisely the parameters of these entities. These provisions tended to reinforce the primacy of central planning and to limit the autonomy of the Kombinate, apparently to a greater extent than originally planned. As of early 1986, there were 132 centrally managed Kombinate, with an average of 25,000 employees per Kombinat. District-managed Kombinate numbered 93, with an average of about 2,000 employees each. At the base of the entire economic structure are the producing units. Although these vary in size and responsibility, the government is gradually reducing their number and increasing their size. The number of industrial enterprises in 1985 was only slightly more than one-fifth that of 1960. Their independence decreased significantly as the Kombinate became fully functional. In addition to the basic structure of the industrial sector, a supplementary hierarchy of government organs reaches down from the Council of Ministers and the State Planning Commission to territorial rather than functional subunits. Regional and local planning commissions and economic councils, subordinate to the State Planning Commission and the Council of Ministers, respectively, extend down to the local level. They consider such matters as the proper or optimal placement of industry, environmental protection, and housing. The agricultural sector of the economy has a somewhat different place in the system, although it too is thoroughly integrated. It is almost entirely collectivized except for private plots (see Economic Sectors, this ch.). The collective farms are formally selfgoverning. They are, however, subordinate to the Council of Ministers through the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Foodstuffs. A complex set of relationships also connects them with other cooperatives and related industries, such as food processing. The fact that East Germany has a planned economy does not mean that a single, comprehensive plan is the basis of all economic activity. An interlocking web of plans having varying degrees of specificity, comprehensiveness, and duration is in operation at all times; any or all of these may be modified during the continuous process of performance monitoring or as a result of new and unforeseen circumstances. The resultant system of plans is extremely complex, and maintaining internal consistency between the various plans is a considerable task. 125

East Germany: A Country Study Operationally, short-term planning is the most important for production and resource allocation. It covers one calendar year and encompasses the entire economy. The key targets set at the central level are overall rate of growth of the economy, volume and structure of the domestic product and its uses, utilization of raw materials and labor and their distribution by sector and region, and volume and structure of exports and imports. Beginning with the 1981 plan, the state added assessment of the ratio of raw material use against value and quantity of output to promote more efficient use of scarce resources. Medium-range (five-year) planning uses the same indicators, although with less specificity. Although the five-year plan is duly enacted into law, it is more properly seen as a series of guidelines rather than as a set of direct orders. It is typically publ 'ed several months after the start of the five-year period it covers, after the first one-year plan has been enacted into law. More general than a one-year plan, the five-year plan is nevertheless specific enough to integrate the yearly plans into a longer time frame. Thus it provides continuity and direction. In the early 1970s, long-term, comprehensive planning began. It too provides general guidance, but over a longer period (fifteen or twenty years), long enough to link the five-year plans in a coherent manner. In the first phase of planning, the centrally determined objectives are divided and assigned to appropriate subordinate units. After internal consideration and discussion have occurred at each level and suppliers and buyers have completed negotiations, the separate parts are reaggregated into draft plans. In the final stage, which follows the acceptance of the total package by the State Planning Commission and the Council of Ministers, the finished plan is redivided among the ministries, and the relevant responsibilities are distributed once more to the producing units. The production plan is supplemented by other mechanisms that control supplies and establish monetary accountability. One such mechanism is the System of Material Balances, which allocates materials, equipment, and consumer goods. It acts as a rationing system, ensuring each element of the economy access to the basic goods it needs to fulfill its obligations. Since most of the goods produced by the economy are covered by this control mechanism, producing units have difficulty obtaining needed items over and above their allocated levels. Another control mechanism is the assignment of prices for all goods and services. These prices serve as a basis for calculating expenses and receipts. Enterprises have every incentive to use these 126

The Economy
prices as guidelines in decision making. Doing so makes plan fulfillment possible and earns bonus funds of various sorts for the enterprise. These bonuses are not allocated indiscriminately for gross output but are awarded for such accomplishments as the introduction of innovations or reduction of labor costs. The system functions smoothly only when its component parts are staffed with individuals whose values coincide with those of the regime or at least complement regime values. Such a sharing takes place in part through the integrative force of the party organs whose members occupy leading positions in the economic structure. Efforts are also made to promote a common sense of purpose through mass participation of almost all workers and farmers in organized discussion of economic planning, tasks, and performance. An East German journal reported, for example, that during preliminary discussion concerning the 1986 annual plan, 2.2 million employees in various enterprises and work brigades of the country at large contributed 735,377 suggestions and comments. Ultimate decision making, however, comes from above. The private sector of the economy is small but not entirely insignificant. In 1985 about 2.8 percent of the net national product came from private enterprises. The private sector includes private farmers and gardeners; independent craftsmen, wholesalers, and retailers; and individuals employed in so-called free-lance activities (artists, writers, and others). Although self-employed, such individuals are strictly regulated. In 1985, for the first time in many years, the number of individuals working in the private sector increased slightly. According to East German statistics, in 1985 there were about 176,800 private entrepreneurs, an increase of about 500 over 1984. Certain private-sector activities are quite important to the system. The SED leadership, for example, has been encouraging private initiative as part of the effort to upgrade consumer services (see The Consumer in the East German Economy, this ch.). In addition to those East Germans who are self-employed full time, there are others who engage in private economic activity on the side. The best known and most important examples are families on collective farms who also cultivate private plots (which can be as large as one-half hectare). Their contribution is significant; according to official sources, in 1985 the farmers privately owned about 8.2 percent of the hogs, 14.7 percent of the sheep, 32.8 percent of the horses, and 30 percent of the laying hens in the country. Professionals such as commercial artists and doctors also worked privately in their free time, subject to separate tax and other regulations. Their impact on the economic system, however, was negligible. 127

East Germany: A Country Study
More difficult to assess, because of its covert and informal nature, is the significance of that part of the private sector called the "second economy." As used here, the term includes all economic arrangements or activities that, owing to their informality or their illegality, take place beyond state control or surveillance. The subject has received considerable attention from Western economists, most of whom are convinced that it is important in CPEs. In the mid-1980s, however, evidence was difficult to obtain and tended to be anecdotal in nature. One kind of informal economic activity includes private arrangements to provide goods or services in return for payment. An elderly woman might hire a neighbor boy to haul coal up to her apartment, or an employed woman might pay a neighbor to do her washing. Closely related would be instances of hiring an acquaintance to repair a clock, tune up an automobile, or repair a toilet. Such arrangements take place in any society, and given the serious deficiencies in the East German service sector, they may be more necessary than in the West. They are doubtless common, and because they are considered harmless, they are not the subject of any significant governmental concern. There is another kind of private economic activity, however, that does concern the government: the stealing and selling of goods for profit by individuals who have ready access to them. For example, an individual might siphon gasoline from a public vehicle and sell it to a friend. No statistics are available on such practices. Surface impressions, however, suggest that they are not very common or significant, certainly not as significant as may be the case in other socialist states where they are reportedly quasiinstitutionalized. Another common activity that is troublesome if not disruptive is the practice of offering a sum of money beyond the selling price to individuals selling desirable goods, or giving something special as partial payment for products in short supply. Such ventures may be no more than offering someone Trinkgeld (a tip), but they may also involve Schmiergeld (money used to "grease" a transaction) or Beziehungen (special relationships). Opinions in East Germany vary as to how significant these practices are. But given the abundance of money in circulation and frequent shortages in luxury items and durable consumer goods, most people are perhaps occasionally tempted to provide a "sweetener," particularly for such taings as automobile parts or furniture. These irregularities do not appear to constitute a major economic problem. However, the East German press does occasionally report prosecutions of particularly egregious cases of illegal "second 128

The Economy
economy" activity, involving what are called "crimes against socialist property" and other activities that are in "conflict and contradiction with the interests and demands of society" (as one report described the situation).

Economic Policy and Performance
During the interwar years, the territory that is now East Germany was profoundly dependent on external economic ties. In the mid-1930s, it shipped almost half of its total production to the other parts of Germany. In return it obtained a slightly larger percentage share of its total economic needs from the same territories. This domestic trade featured sales of agricultural products; textiles; products of light industry, such as cameras, typewriters, and optical equipment; and purchases of industrial goods and equipment. In addition, a substantial share of the production from the area was shipped abroad in those years, and additional goods were received in return. Such a pattern of interdependence and specialization had its advantages, particularly in ensuring the population a standard of living comparable with that of western Germany. Conversely chaos could result if the intricate system of interactions broke down. Major dislocations occurred after World War II, when Germany was divided into two sections, one part dominated by the Soviet Union and the other by the Western Allies. Because it could no longer rely on its former system of internal and external trading, the Soviet Zone of Occupation had to be restructured and made more self-sufficient through the construction of basic industry. Such an economic strategy was also dictated by the Stalinist pronouncement that the newly established people's democracies in Eastern Europe were to replicate the Soviet economic strategy, which emphasized heavy industry and a trade denial policy bordering on autarky. For East Germany, this meant building iron and steel plants and increasing the country's capacity to produce chemicals and heavy machinery regardless of the cost such a strategy imposed on living standards. The reorientation and restructuring of the East German economy would have been difficult in any case. The substantial reparations costs that the Soviet Union imposed on its occupation zone, and later on East Germany, made the process even more difficult. Payments continued into the early 1950s, ending only with the death of Stalin. According to Western estimates, these payments amounted to about 25 percent of total East German production through 1953. Reconstruction was complicated by the massive effort to introduce socialism that began almost immediately after the war. In October 129

East Germany: A Country Study
1945, the Soviet Military Administration in Germany ordered the confiscation of all properties belonging to former Nazis and their sympathizers. The measure affected properties of the great German banking concerns and about 10,000 other enterprises. In 1946 the first phase of agrarian reform began; it involved redistribution of all landholdings over 100 hectares, as well as lands owned by former Nazi activists, and affected about one-third of all land in agricultural production. Agricultural laborers, poor farmers, and Germans recently resettled from the "lost territories" in Eastern Europe received about two-thirds of this confiscated land, and the remainder was converted into state farms. The public reaction to reparations and land reform, though muted, was mixed. Reparations costs could hardly have been well received by the impoverished population, whatever their political views. Dispossession of the ex-Nazis and large landowners may have been popular with many, including those who received parcels of land; but many individuals who were dispossessed fled to the West with their much needed expertise, if not their movable resources. In addition, dividing the land into small units (the plots averaged about eight hectares) was unlikely to lead to the institution of efficient farming methods, although initially the level of mechanization in agriculture was se low that the matter was of little significance. The postwar years and the early 1950s were very difficult ones for the East Germans. About 2 million more people lived in East Germany during the immediate postwar years than in the 1930s, straining the country's limited resources. Nevertheless, official statistics suggest that by 1950 the extent of economic recovery was already impressive (see table 4, Appendix A). By 1950 the results of the state's cautious steps toward the socializing of both industry and agriculture were already discernible. Near the end of 1950, about 66 percent of all industry, 40 percent of the construction enterprises, and 30 percent of the domestic trades were already state owned. In 1952, six years after the land had been distributed to the poorer agricultural population, collectivization of agriculture began in earnest. By 1960 about 85 percent of the land had been collectivized. During the 1950s, East Germany made significant economic progress, at least as indicated by the gross figures. By 1960 investment had grown by a factor of about 4.5, while gross industrial production had increased by a factor of 2.9. Within that broad category of industrial production, the basic sectors, such as machinery and transport equipment, grew especially rapidly, while the consumer sectors such as textiles lagged behind. 130

The Economy In the 1950s, the size, composition, and distribution of the labor torce also underwent significant change. Although during that decade the population declined by 1.2 million, the number employed actually increased by about 500,000, a development caused by an increase of over 650,000 in the number of working women. In the same period, the percentage of the total labor force employed in industry increased by about 7 percent (to 36 percent of the total), while agricultural labor dropped from 28 to 22 percent of the labor force. The only other significant shift was in the services area, which increased its share of the labor force from 12.5 to 15 percent. Consumption grew significantly in the first years, although from a very low base, and showed respectable growth rates over the entire decade (see table 5, Appendix A). Fluctuations were considerable from year to year, however. High rates for the years 1954, 1955, and 1958 reflected consumption-oriented policies proclaimed in 1953 (the New Course) and 1958 (the year that witnessed the inauguration of the Seven-Year Plan for 1959-65). In 1955 and again in 1960, downturns were recorded, in the latter year partly because of popular resistance to further steps toward the full collectivization of agriculture. Disruptions in agriculture and the migration of East Germans to the West, which reached a high point at the beginning of 1961, helped to produce a general crisis in the economy, as reflected in almost all the economic data for the early 1960s. As the 1950s ended, pessimism about the future seemed rather appropriate. Surprisingly, however, after construction of the Berlin Wall and several years of consolidation and realignment, East Germany entered a period of impressive economic growth that produced clear benefits for the people. For the years 1966-70, GDP and national income grew at average annual rates of 6.3 and 5.2 percent, respectively (see table 6, Appendix A). Simultaneously, investment grew at an average annual rate of 10.7 percent, retail trade at 4.6 percent, and real per capita income at 4.2 percent (see table 7, Appendix A). During the 1960s, collectivization of agriculture continued. The number of people employed grew steadily, although marginally, by about 80,000, despite a net population decrease of more than 100,000 and an increase in the percentage of the population either too old or too young to be part of the labor force. By the end of the 1960s, the percentage of women in the work; force had reached 48.3 percent. The most significant shift in the sectoral composition of the labor force was the continued drop in the relative size of the agricultural labor component, which went from 17 percent of the total in 1960 to about 12 percent a decade later. 131

East Germany: A Country Study
As of 1970, growth rates in the various sectors of the economy did not differ greatly from those of a decade earlier. Production increases continued to be highest in the basic industry areas, while light industry-textile and food-processing branches-still lagged. Production reached about 140 to 150 percent of the levels of a decade earlier. Agricultural growth was not reported in comparable terms, but it is possible to compare total production of certain key items for the years 1966-70 against those for 1956-60 and thus obtain a rough measure of increase, while minimizing the impact of a possible single poor harvest (see table 8, Appendix A). The growth rates in production resulted in substantial increases in personal consumption (see table 3, Appendix A). This same period also saw the establishment and subsequent dismantling of significant economic reforms. The SED leadership instituted the New Economic System (NES), as the reforms came to be known, at its Sixth Party Congress held in 1963. The theoretical basis of the NES drew upon the ideas of the reform-minded Soviet economist Evsei Liberman. Specifically, East Germans who advocated reform argued that existing procedures placed too much emphasis on numbers (the "tonnage" ideology) at the expense of efficiency, that the distorted pricing system caused excessive waste and improper decision making, and that innovation was being stifled because enterprises had neither the incentive nor the autonomy necessary to introduce progressive changes. The NES substantially decentralized authority, giving a degree of power to production units; central controls were effected essentially through fiscal and monetary instruments. Prices were altered and made more flexible and thus more rational, while enterprises were given much greater control over their investment and other funds. The reform did not fail in terms of production figures. Yet by the end of the 1960s, its most important features had been rescinded. Apparently the crucial factors prompting its abandonment were both economic and political. Economically, decentralization had led to unacceptably high investment levels and decisions that were inconsistent with central priorities. Politically, the leadership may have simply been uncomfortable with the trend toward decentralization. The reform also suffered from its affinity with the liberal economic program of the Alexander Dubcek era in Czechoslovakia. Most of the reforms of the 1960s having been abandoned, the decade of the 1970s began with a "return to normalcy" in terms of economic organization. By this time, East German leaders could face the future with a greater measure of confidence than ever before, for both political and economic reasons. The political isolation was ending, as demonstrated by East Germany's conclusion 132

The Economy
of the Basic Treaty with West Germany in 1972 and its subsequent admission into the United Nations in September 1973. And on the economic side, East Germany's performance was noteworthy. In the 1970s, with two decades of economic expansion and development behind them, the East German leaders faced a number of new problems. Concern now centered on how East Germany should proceed under conditions of "mature socialism." In the 1970s, in East Germany and in the other member states of Comecon, attention focused on the proper way to respond to the trend toward ever expanding varieties of products needed in an advanced society, many of which were becoming more complex and expensive to produce. Since this trend meant increasing costs for each increment in total product output, prospects for sustained economic growth at previous rates were uncertain. The Comecon member states agreed that the organization would move toward greater integration, specialization, and cooperation of the several economies in what became known as the Comprehensive Program of 1971 (see Appendix B). The member states would pool their resources for the development of costly and sophisticated projects of organizationwide importance. Members would also specialize in certain areas of production to minimize duplication of effort. For example, no longer would every member manufacture ships or buses; only one or two countries would produce such items, which they would then trade for goods produced elsewhere. All countries would presumably benefit from the greater efficiency of mass production. This focus inevitably had significant implications for the East German economy, i.e., how it should be structured, what it should produce, and so on. In general, East Germany gradually consolidated production units into larger and larger entities, culminating in the introduction of the Kombinale of the late 1970s (see Economic Structure and Its Control Mechanisms, this ch.). Consolidation also occurred in agriculture; by 1980 there were only one-third as many collective farms as there had been in 1960. In the 1970s, unforeseen international developments forced East German leaders to modify their strategy in some areas. First came the 1973 price explosion for petroleum, accompanied by a more general inflationary spiral on the world market. A slowdown in the rate of growth in Soviet petroleum export capabilities clouded the future, as did the fact that prices for raw materials rose much more steeply on the world market than did prices for the kinds of products East Germany exported. In the late 1970s, a worldwide recession also had a negative impact on the performance of the East German economy. Because much of its trade was with the Soviet 133

East Germany. A Country Study
Union and the other European members of Comecon, the East German economy was somewhat insulated from the immediate effects of changes on the world market. Nevertheless, over the long run these interrelated developments affected East Germany, and in each case the impact was decidedly negative. As early as 1970, East Germany began to show a deficit in trade with the West and after 1975 with the Soviet Union. Despite these problems, throughout the 1970s the East German economy as a whole enjoyed relatively strong and stable growth. In 1971, First Secretary Honecker declared the "raising of the material and cultural living standard" of the population to be a "principal task" of the economy; and private consumption grew at an average annual rate of 4.8 percent from 1971 to 1975 and 4 percent from 1976 to 1980. The economy's sturdy performance was not a result of a growing labor input-the size of the work force scarcely increased-but rather of a high level of investment in fixed assets and an increase in materials consumption that actually exceeded the growth of net output. The 1976-80 Five-Year Plan achieved an average annual growth rate of 4.1 per cent. By the end of the 1970s, the country's growing indebtedness both to the West and to the Soviet Union was becoming a serious problem. A major priority of the East German economic strategy for the 1980s, therefore, was holding down imports and accelerating the growth of exports. The new economic strategy called for speeding up scientific-technological advances; reducing specific production consumption (primary materials consumed per unit of national income), particularly with regard to energy use; making limited, carefully targeted investments geared toward modernization rather than new projects; and improving labor productivity (especially important because little expansion of the labor force could be expected). The stated goals were an overall "intensification" of economic processes and elimination of "reserves," or excess capacity in the system. The 1981-85 Five Year Plan called for maintenance of previous growth rates, both in the basic producing spheres and in the consumer sector, while at the same time mandating a reduction of 6.1 percent per annum in specific consumption of "nationally important" energy supplies, raw materials, and other materials. To reduce dependence on imported fuels, East Germany sought tu develop the capability of mining 285 to 290 million tons of lignite annually by 1985, a substantial increase over the 1980 production level of just under 260 million tons. On the consumer side, the government sought to hold prices for the basic necessities at existing levels, necessitating increasing subsidies from the state over 134

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time. The plan projected an expansion in supplies of consumer goods retail trade by 20 to 23 percent and net personal income by about the same amount. Housing construction was to continue to receive special attention, and more than 900,000 units were to be completed by 1985. While the traditional planned system remained fundamentally unchanged, a number of significant innovations did occur during drafting and implementation of the 1981-85 Five-Year Plan. One change in the direct control mechanisms of the planning process was the elevation of efficiency measures, including cost/profit considerations, to a level of primary importance as plan indices. As of 1983, efficiency measures displaced industrial goods-or grossproduction as the primary consideration (gross production remained an important consideration in planning, however). This change implied.a cautious upgrading of the profit motive. To serve as indirect controls on the functioning of the economy, the plan introduced a series of price increases in the producing sector, first for raw materials (actually beginning as early as 1976) and subsequently for semifinished and finished goods as well. Beginning in 1984, a payroll tax, in the form of employer contributions to social funds, was levied in the industrial sector to encourage efficient use of labor. Examination of loan applications submitted by enterprises became more rigorous, involving a more direct assessment of the proposed investment project's potential contribution to the "intensification" effort. The 1981-85 plan period proved to be a difficult time for the East German economy. The first serious problem was the decision by Western banks in 1981 and 1982 to clamp down on credit for East Germany and the concurrent decision of the Soviet Union to reduce oil deliveries by 10 percent (see Foreign Trade, this ch.). The immediate East German response-retrenchment on Western imports and stepped up exports- resulted in domestic bottlenecks and a growth rate of less than 3 percent. However, by the end of the period the economy had chalked up a respectable overall performance, with an annual average growth rate of 4.5 percent (the plan target had been 5.1 percent). Industrial production proved especially disappointing; affected as it was by scarcity of resources, it grew at an annual rate of about 4 percent instead of the targeted 5.1 percent (see table 9, Appendix A). In the limited investment program, which amounted to roughly the same amount as in the previous plan period (264 billion GDR marks at 1980 prices; for value of the GDR mark-see Glossary), metallurgy, the chemical industry, and microelectronics received high priority, necessarily at the expense of other areas. 135

East Germany: A Country Study
During the 1981-85 period, however, specific energy consumption (primary energy consumption per unit of national income) was reduced by 3.5 percent per year, an impressive record. The savings were largely in the production sector; household consumption increased markedly (energy prices for consumers remained stable, and acquisition of energy-using consumer durables continued apace). Oil consumption dropped sufficiently to more than compensate for the cutback in Soviet oil exports that occurred in 1982-83; by the end of the plan period, East Germany was able to make available for export (as crude oil and various oil products) about 40 percent of its oil imports from the Soviet Union. At 312 million tons, lignite production exceeded plan targets in 1985 by 22 to 27 million tons. In the 1984-85 period, the agricultural sector registered a particularly good performance, and record harvests were reported. During the plan period, the state raised crop and livestock prices, and it eliminated subsidies to the input sector (for example, fuels, feedstuffs, and construction materials) to promote greater efficiency. The situation of the individual consumer deteriorated somewhat during the early years of the plan because of shortages and supply bottlenecks. In 1984 the growth rates in private consumption customary in earlier years resumed. During the 1981-85 plan period, East Germany also managed to reduce substantially its debt both to the West and to the Soviet Union. Lower oil prices were helpful in some respects, and East Germany would benefit increasingly as the Comecon price was adjusted to the new world prices during the 1986-90 Five-Year Plan period. It was true that lower prices also made East Germany's re-export of oil products to the West less profitable. In general, however, by 1985 East Germany was again considered to be a "good debtor," so that the foreign trade balance was a less sensitive issue, at least for the time being.

Economic Sectors
Mining, Energy, and Industry
Industry is the dominant sector in the East German economy and is the principal basis for the relatively high standard of living (see table 10, Appendix A). East Germany ranks among the world's top industrial nations, and in Comecon it is second in total industrial output only to the Soviet Union. East Germany has an abundance of lignite, of which it is the world's largest producer. Reserves of lignite that can be mined with up-to-date technology are estimated at 24 billion tons, of which 92 percent is suitable for open-pit mining. The major portion of 136

The Economy the workable reserves is located in Cottbus and Dresden districts adjoining the Polish frontier. Other important deposits are located in the Halle and Leipzig districts. In 1985 production of raw lignite was 312 million tons, up substantially from 267 million tons at the beginning of the five-year plan in 1981. Lignite is used primarily as a fuel for thermal-electric power stations, for the production of coal gas, and as a raw material for the chemical industry. In 1985 approximately 72 percent of domestic energy demand was met by this source. It is inferior to hard coal, crude oil, and natural gas and is less economical to use than those products. Because of lignite's high moisture and low caloric content, it is also costly to transport. The bulk of the output is therefore consumed close to the mining centers. A portion of the lignite output is converted into briquettes to improve its heating qualities and to reduce the cost of transportation. Reserves of hard coal have always been relatively insignificant. After having declined steadily during the previous 20 years, mining of East Germany's very small reserves of hard coal had virtually ceased by 1978; reserves were becoming depleted, and in 1979 only 50,000 tons were mined. As a result, East Germany imported the bulk of its yearly requirements for hard coal, primarily from the Soviet Union, Poland, and Czechoslovakia. As of 1985, East Germany possessed only one functioning nuclear reactor for production of electricity--in Lubmin near Greifswalddespite earlier more ambitious plans. Nuclear energy played a relatively modest role in the country's energy supply situation. In 1985 only about 10.5 percent of East Germany's electricity needs were met by nuclear energy, which represented a decline from 12 percent in 1980. East German iron ore deposits are widely scattered, and the seams are expensive to mine because of their relatively low ore content. In the 1980s, annual output of iron ore fell far short of the country's industrial needs; thus East Germany imported large amounts of this material. The country also imported virtually all its requirements for manganese, chrome, and other ferroalloys. Nonferrous metals, including copper, lead, zinc, and tin, were mined in small quantities. To supplement the limited domestic production, East Germany imported substantial quantities of nonferrous metals from the Soviet Union. Before World War I, the area that later became East Germany was not well developed industrially. Because this area lacked raw materials, heavy industry was generally located in other parts of the German state. Compounding the problems for the newly created East German state in 1949 was the massive destruction during 137

East Germany: A Country Study World War II of the industrial plant that had existed there and the subsequent Soviet dismantling and removal of factories and equipment that had survived the war. After Soviet demands for reparations ended, construction of an industrial base for the country began in the early 1950s. However, East Germany's industrial "economic miracle" did not begin until after the flood of emigration had been halted in 1961. Given a base of 100 in 1980, the official index of gross industrial production increased from 10 in 1950 to 32 in 1960, 58 in 1970, and 122 in 1985. Obviously the country's industry had come a long way from its shaky beginning four decades earlier. According to official sources, as of 1985 chemical products and machinery were the most important groups in industrial production in East Germany, providing 19.7 and 18.9 percent of the value of total industrial output, respectively. They were followed by the agricultural and food-processing industry at 13.5 percent, the energy and fuel industry at 12.2 percent, light industry (excluding textiles) at 9.5 percent, metallurgy at 9.4 percent, and electrotechnical and electronic equipment at 8.5 percent. Other significant groups were the textile industry (5.8 percent), the construction materials industry (2.0 percent), and the water supply/conservation industry (0.6 percent). As of 1985, about 3.2 million, or 37.9 percent of the approximately 8.5 million persons in the labor force, were employed in the industrial sector, according to official statistics. Their efforts produced 70.3 percent of the country's net product. Agriculture According to official East German sources, in 1985 agriculture and forestry employed 10.8 percent of the labor force, received 7.4 percent of gross capital investments, and contributed 8.1 percent to the country's net product. Agricultural output did not meet domestic demand. According to Western sources, in 1983 it satisfied about 90 percent of the country's needs, the shortfall being imported. Excellent harvests in 1984 and 1985, however, greatly reduced East Germany's dependence on imports. The Soviet model, introduced after World War II, was the basis for the system of collective and state farms. Collectivization was not forced on East German agriculture, which previously had been dominated by family farming operations, until the late 1950s. By 1960, however, about 85 percent of the farmland was either collectivized or state owned. State farms, on which everyone is an employee of the central government, remained much less important in East Germany than in the Soviet Union. Collective farms, 138

Mechanized agriculture Courtesy Panorama DDR

that is, agricultural producer cooperatives, constituted the dominant form of agricultural organization. In 1984 they occupied about 85.8 percent of the total agricultural land, while state farms held only about 7 percent. Other land in the socialist agricultural sector, which made up 95 percent of total land in 1984, was held by horticultural cooperatives and various other specialized units. Three kinds of collective farms-types I, II, and III-have existed since the early days of collectivization. Types I and II are generally considered to be transitional to type III, the most advanced form. On type I farms, only the plowland must be collectively used. All other land and productive resources are left for the members' individual use. On type II collective farms, all farmland is cooperatively used except small private plots retained by each member family. In addition, members surrender all machinery and equipment needed for the operation of the collective sector. Type III farms are completely collectivized. All productive resources (including plowland, forests, meadows, bodies of water, machinery, and buildings) except for small private plots and a few head of livestock are used collectively. To become a member of a type III collective, a farmer must contribute property-buildings, livestock, and machinery-of a specified value, which becomes the property of the organization. Members whose assets are not adequate to meet this requirement may discharge their obligation out of earned income over a period of time. Work on the private plots must take 139

East Germany: A Country Study place during noncommunal work hours. Owners of private plots can sell and bequeath them. On all collective farms, distribution of the income remaining after compulsory contribution to several specialized funds is based on the amount of land surrendered by each member and the amount of work performed for the collective. The second of these factors is more heavily weighted than the first. The retention of landownership does have a basis in law; in the pasti individual members have received compensation for their land when it has been removed from the control of the collective for conversion to industrial use. Each collective farmer must contribute at least the minimum annual amount of work prescribed by the collective assembly (general meeting of all members). Members who do not perform the specified minimum work are penalized by deductions from their incomes. In line with SED policy, minimum annual work norms help ensure that members devote their energies primarily to the collective sector rather than to their own private plots. By 1980 there were only about 10,000 farmers operating types I and II collective farms, thus bringing the vast majority of collective farmers into the type III farm favored by the party. During the 1970s and early 1980s, the trend in East German agriculture was toward larger units; some crop-producing collectives and state farms combined to form cooperatives holding 4,000 to 5,000 hectares. These agribusinesses, known as Cooperative Departments of Crop Production (Kooperative Abteilungen der Pflanzenproduktion-KAP), which included food-processing establishments, became the dominant form of agricultural enterprise in crop production. In the early 1980s, specialization also took place in livestock production. In 1982 the East German government announced a reform program for agriculture. General goals were an improvement in rural life and an increase in autonomy for the agricultural producer cooperatives. The program called for closer cooperation between arable and livestock farming to facilitate planning, especially with regard to feedstuffs. It also provided greater incentives for cooperative farms and modest encouragement of the small private sector. During the early 1980s, agricultural performance was lackluster, lagging behind industrial growth. However, in 1984 and 1985 excellent harvests occurred. Although favorable weather played a part, both Western and official sources ascribed additional credit to the agricultural reforms. Transportation and Communications The transportation system inherited by East Germany included 140

The Economy
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East Germany: A Country Study
the war (see fig. 8). During the occupation period, the Soviet Union confiscated from the railroads a substantial amount of rolling stock and track as reparations. In addition, factories that had produced locomotives were dismantled and taken to the Soviet Union as complete railroad maintenance shops. After reparations payments ended, the railroad system was slowly rebuilt, and highways and canals were repaired. The political situation in West Berlin and the closing of the east-west border imposed restrictions on all forms of inter-German transportation. Lack of sufficient investment in the 1960s and 1970s hampered maintenance and the acquisition of spare parts for rolling stock and highway vehicles. In 1985 the system as a whole consisted of 14,054 kilometers of railroad tracks, 47,214 kilometers of roads, and 2,319 kilometers of inland waterways. There were 13,777 kilometers of standard-gauge railroad line in 1985; 2,523 kilometers were electrified. As of 1984, about 3,830 kilometers were double tracked. At 13.1 kilometers of track per 100 square kilometers, the network's density approximately equaled that of West Germany. A major goal in railroad improvement during the 1970s and early 1980s was the replacement of steam locomotives by diesel and electric engines. By 1986 electric engines were supplying 38 percent of the locomotive capacity in the country, and plans called for an increase to 60 percent by 1990. Additional focal points in the 1980s were the introduction of microelectronic technology and robots to improve the efficiency of railroad operations. In 1985 freight carried by rail amounted to 347.9 million tons for a total of 58.7 billion ton-kilometers. Passengers carried numbered 623 million, or about 22.5 billion passenger-kilometers. The best known roads in both Germanies are the autobahns, many of them built during the 1930s and World War II primarily for military purposes. These limited-access highways also became important for private and commercial users and remained so after Germany was partitioned. However, the East German part of the system was sometimes underutilized because of its orientation toward the country's borders. During the 1960s and 1970s, as the economy produced more trucks and buses, the highway system increased in importance. New sections of autobahn completed during the 1970s- Dresden-Leipzig, East Berlin-Rostock, and the western part of the Berlin Ring-added to the overall importance of the highway system and contributed to the growing volume of freight carried by road. In 1982 construction of the autobahn connection on East German territory between Berlin and Hamburg was completed. With West German financial assistance, major projects were also carried out on the major transit artery from Berlin to Helmstedt and additional portions of the Berlin Ring. 142

The Economy
By the late 1970s, however, increasing fuel costs forced authorities to give more thought to saving gasoline and diesel fuel, and the government encouraged diversion of freight from the highways to trains and barges. In 1985 freight carried on the highways amounted to 555 million tons. This figure, although well over 1.5 times the amount carried by rail, represented a considerable proportional decline compared with rates in the 1970s. In 1985 the 15.1 billion ton-kilometers for motor vehicle freight was only about a quarter of the 58.7 billion ton-kilometers posted by rail freight. The inland waterway system inherited by East Germany was well developed before World War I. In the mid- 1980s, it remained important to the overall transportation network. The Elbe River, navigable from Hamburg through East Germany to Prague, provides the north-south axis of the waterway system; and the series of canals from the Polish border near Eisenhiuttenstadt to the interGerman border and beyond provides the east-west axis. Magdeburg, where the two axes meet, is a hub of inland waterway traffic. In the mid-1980s, other major inland waterway ports included Frankfurt am Oder, Dresden, East Berlin, Potsdam, and Halle. The 17.7 million tons of cargo carried in 1985 (2.4 billion tonkilometers) was a small amount compared with the amounts carried by road and rail. Nevertheless, the waterways remained important, particularly for bulk cargoes. The approximately 1,170 river and canal craft plying the waterways in 1985 had a total capacity of about 608,800 tons. Until the mid-1950s, East Germany had a negligible shipbuilding capacity, practically no oceangoing vessels, and no seaport facilities worthy of the name (the Baltic ports, which had never been of major importance, were destroyed in the war). After 1957, however, shipbuilding and harbor construction mushroomed as the government invested heavily in those industries, in part because of large and continuing Soviet purchases of seagoing vessels. Reconstruction of the ports of Rostock, Stralsund, and Wismar moved forward. By the 1970s, Rostock, which had received the highest funding priority, ranked fourth among Baltic ports. Further improvements to facilities at Rostock during the 1976-80 Five-Year Plan period, completion of the East Berlin-Rostock autobahn, and electrification of the Berlin-Rostock railroad line increased Rostock's importance to the country's economy. The less important port of Wismar specialized in potash and grain; Stralsund specialized in lumber and bulk goods. In 1985 flag vessels in the East German oceangoing merchant fleet numbered 171, for a total of 1.7 million deadweight tons. Freight turnover in the three Baltic ports in 143

East Germany: A Country Study
1985 amounted to about 953,000 tons in Stralsund, 4.5 million tons in Wismar, and 19.7 million tons in Rostock. The Oder River port of Schwedt is the East German terminus of the Friendship pipeline, which carries crude oil from the Soviet Union. About 1,301 kilometers of pipeline carry the crude oil from Schwedt to Rostock for transshipment and from Schwedt to the refinery city of Leuna, located about 25 kilometers west of Leipzig. There are also 500 kilometers of pipeline for refined products and 1,500 kilometers for natural gas. Beginning in 1980, all domestic air traffic (excluding agricultural and industrial operations) in East Germany was suspended in an effort to economize on fuel; Interflug, the state airline, provided only international service on a regular basis. In 1985 the gross amount of cargo carried by civil aviation was 29,700 tons, accounting for 71.6 million ton-kilometers. In 1984 Interflug carried morc than 1.5 million passengers (2.5 billion passenger-kilometers). East Berlin-Sch6nefeld was the country's principal airport; Dresden, Erfurt, Heringsdorf, and Leipzig also handled substantial amounts of traffic. In the mid-1980s, East Germany possessed a comparatively welldeveloped communications system. There were about 3.6 million telephones in use, or about 21.8 for every 100 inhabitants, and 16,476 telex stations. In 1976 East Germany began operating a ground radio station at Firstenwalcde for relaying and receiving communications from Soviet satellites as a participant in the international telecommunications organization Intersputnik. In 1985 there were 6,646,500 licensed radios in the country, or 39.9 for every 100 persons, and 6,078,500 licensed televisions, or 36.5 for every 100 persons. The mass media, including newspapers, radio, and television, were closely supervised by the state. However, East Germans could also receive West German television except in the area around Dresden (in 1983 the East German government began installing a cable television system for the Dresden area that would include West German transmissions, possibly in an effort to overcome the reluctance of East Geptmans to live there).

Banking, Finance, and Currency
Investment activity in the East German economy in its broad outlines is fundamentally a function of planning on the national level. Funding for investment activities may be allocated by direct provisions in the national budget, by disbursements made from the resources of economic units, or by credits. General investment goals for the various sectors of the economy are defined in the fiveyear and one-year plans. 144




* V. V

r .a

Warnow shipyard, Warneminde Courtesy Panorama DDR

The East German banking system is highly centralized. The State Bank (with regional and industrial branches), which is an organ of the Council of Ministers and serves as the bank of issue, is responsible for overall execution of currency and credit policies. Integrated within the centralized system are banks for the various sectors of the economy: institutions to handle foreign trade, investment, agriculture, and small enterprises. There are also savings banks, functioning directly under oversight of the Ministry of Finance. Various economic units and, less frequently, individuals may apply for credit, which the banks grant in accordance with guidelines devised by the State Bank and the Ministry of Finance and approved by the Council of Ministers. Banks play an active role in the planned economy of East Germany, exercising supervisory functions, promoting the goals of the economic plans, and generally helping to shape economic behavior in ways considered desirable by the government. In East Germany, prices have always been centrally controlled; pricing policy is used as a tool to promote economic, political, and social objectives. In production, alteration of prices on selected input goods has been one method by which central planners encourage greater efficiency. Prices for basic consumer goods, by contrast, have by and large been held constant, although some increases are masked by the introduction of "new" or "improved" products. The currency of East Germany is the East German mark, or GDR mark, officially a nonconvertible, domestic currency. 145

East Germany. A Country Study
International financial relationships are assessed on the basis of the valuta mark (see Glossary), over which the Council of Ministers has oversight. In East-West trade, Western currency is used, and in Comecon trade the Soviet foreign-exchange ruble is used (see Foreign Trade, this ch.). For noncommercial transactions such as tourist trade, the State Bank establishes the rates of exchange for the GDR mark. Beginning in 1973, it became legal for East Germans to possess foreign currency. The state tapped this supply of hard currency through the establishment of a chain of Intershops, which sold luxury and Western goods to tourists and to East Germans with hard currency; exchanging East German marks privately for hard currency remained illegal. In the late 1970s, the government introduced regulations that required East Germans to make their Intershop purchases in certificates obtained by exchanging their foreign currencies at a bank (foreign tourists could still use Western currencies in the Intershops), making it possible to monitor the circulation of foreign currencies more closely. In terms of magnitude, East Germany has a currency problem unique among the countries of Eastern Europe. Each year the country is visited by millions of West German tourists and relatives of East German citizens, who bring West German marks, or Deutsche marks (also known as D-marks--see Glossary) with them. As a result, some portions of the population have access to hard currency and the goods it can buy, while others do not. One by-product of this state of affairs is a black market in currency, in which one D-mark costs four or five GDR marks. This situation causes several problems for the regime. First and most obviously, the local currency is discredited because its de facto value against any Western counterpart is markedly lower than the official exchange rate. Second, the fact that hard currencies are unevenly and inequitably distributed among the people on a random basis threatens to create a distinction between "haves" and "have nots." Third, the circulation of such monies can introduce uncertainties in economic activity that can at least marginally distort the balance intended in the plan. From the leadership's point of view, the influx of Western currency is far from ideal. However, it may be that the advantages obtained from the acquisition of hard currencies through the Intershops, the general popularity of such stores with the people, and their utility in satisfying consumer demand in some degree outweigh the disadvantages or problems that accompany the existence of a second currency in the economy. 146

The Economy Foreign Trade East Germany has always been fundamentally dependent upon foreign trade for its economic well-being, and that dependence has increased with the passage of time. Although trade has brought the country enormous advantages, it has also introduced uncertainties into the economy because worldwide conditions have been so volatile during the 1970s and early 1980s. The East German regime has at least avoided the worst possible situation for a centrally planned economy-rapidly changing prices (in an adverse direction) for its basic exports and imports-because its economy is largely insulated from short-term fluctuations on the world market. This insulation results from the fact that twothirds of its trade has been with other communist countries and has been conducted on a medium- or long-term, planned basis. Over time, however, intra-Comecon trade has also been affected by world market conditions. It is also true that East German trade with the West has been possible only when the Western partner has found it profitable to buy or sell. Thus East German dependence on foreign suppliers and buyers carries with it many of the normal risks as well as advantages of international commerce. The foreign trade sector of the economy is particularly difficult to analyze and to relate to the other domestic branches. One difficulty stems from the fact that East Germany separates its external economic activity from its domestic system, placing each in a relatively distinct compartment. Producers of goods for export operate under the same price and other constraints as those making products for domestic use; their sales to foreign trade organs are measured in GDR marks. But when the foreign trade organ sells on the international market, the prices it charges are determined by market conditions or negotiated agreement, and they need not have a relationship to the internal price. In fact, the transactions are carried out in foreign currencies or value units. This process is reversed for imports. Foreign trade organs purchase imports with United States dollars, D-marks, or Soviet foreignexchange rubles under conditions imposed by the world market and then "resell" them internally to the end users for GDR marks. When the East Germans have published statistics on foreign trade, they have used valuta marks rather than GDR marks. How those reported figures were calculated, however, is not known. The value of the valuta mark against the domestic currency is also not known. East German economists generally consider the two kinds of marks to be of equal value. In the mid-1980s, Western calculations suggested that official East German estimates overstated somewhat the value of the flow of foreign trade. 147

East Germany: A Country Study
The unavailability of important statistics poses another problem for the Western analyst attempting to assess East German trade. The East German statistical yearbook does not break down trade totals into exports and imports but instead shows only the total turnover. As a result, it is not possible to determine whether East Germany's trade is balanced, either overall or with individual countries. Some export and import totals are reported on a country-by-country basis, but they are selective rather than exhaustive, and they are given in value terms that cannot be aggregated, i.e., in some instances by weight or unit and in others by value. Those who would examine East German trade performance are therefore forced to rely heavily on the data of its partners, a cumbersome and not altogether satisfactory process. According to East German sources, trade turnover has grown impressively. In 1985 it amounted to 180,191.3 million valuta marks, about 77 percent of produced nat',nal income if the valuta mark is assumed to be equal to the GDR mark, or somewhat less according to Western calculations. According to official sources, as of 1985 the flow pattern of East German trade, in gross termls, was about 65 percent with other communist states, 30 percent with "capitalist industrial countries," and 5 percent with the developing world. During the 1970s, a slight reduction in the trade share of the communist cou ries took place, accompanied by a compensatory increase in commercial relations with other countries. This situation reflected the fact that in the 1970s Western credits were made available to and were u;ed by East Germany for the purchase of increasing amounts of Western goods; in the early 1980s, a general leveling off occurred as restrictions on credit tightened. East Germany has also actively sought to build ties with the developing world. In general, the extent of fluctuations has been modest, and the orientation of East German trade has been clear. According to official statistics, of total East German exports in 1985, 46.6 percent consisted of machinery, equipment, and transport products. This group of products had declined in importance since the early 1970s (down from 51.7 percent in 1970). By contrast, in 1985 exports of fuels, minerals, and metals had tended to increase, from 10.1 percent in 1970 to 20 percent in 1985. Other major groups were industrial consumer goods, at 14.1 percent (down from 20.2 percent in 1970); chemicals, fertilizers, building materials, and other goods at 11.6 percent (10.6 percent in 1970); and various raw materials, unfinished goods for industrial use, and food products, at 7.7 percent (up from 7.4 percent in 1970). On the import side, in 1985 by far the largest group was fuels and other raw materials, at 42.5 percent (up from 27.6 percent in 1970). Next 148

Exhibit of East German products at the Leipzig Fair
Courtesy Panorama DDR

in importance were machinery and transport equipment at 26.8 percent (down from 34.2 percent). Various other raw materials and unfinished goods for industrial use, as well as various food products, followed, at 16.1 percent (down from 28.1 percent in 1970). In 1985 chemical products and industrial consumer goods were also important, standing at 8.4 and 6.2 percent, respectively (both of these had increased in significance since 1970, from 5.6 and 4.5 percent, respectively). In 1985 about 65 percent of East Germany's total trade turnover was with five countries (see table 11, Appendix A). The dominant partner was the Soviet Union, having a trade share of almost 39 percent of total East German trade. Next in importance was West Germany, including West Berlin (8.3 percent). Three fellow Comecon members followed: Czechoslovakia (7.2 percent), Poland (5.4 percent), and Hungary (4.9 percent). In trade with the Soviet Union, major items on the East German export side in 1985 were machinery and transport equipment (by some counts, as much as 80 percent). Chemicals, textiles and clothing, and domestic appliances also played a minor role. Major groups of imports from the Soviet Union included petroleum and petroleum products (about 42 percent), machinery and transport equipment (about 11 percent), and ferrous products (10.5 percent). There were also significant imports of wood and paper products (4 percent) and coal and coke (about 3 percent). 149

East Germany: A Country Study
An important factor in East German-Soviet trade was the longterm dependence of East Germany, along with other Comecon countries, on the Soviet Union for imports of fuel, primarily oil but also natural gas and coal. Prior to the oil price explosion of 1973 and for some time after, Comecon prices were fairly stable. The subsequent drastic changes in oil prices had an inevitable, though somewhat delayed, impact on East Germany. In 1975 at Soviet insistence, a new pricing system was implemented for Comecon trade, which called for new calculations every year based on average world market prices for the previous five years. As a result, for a number of years prices increased considerably, but in predictable steps (thus making planning possible) and at a relatively favorable pace. According to Honecker, the 1980 prices paid for Soviet oil were only 50 percent of the world market level. Even that price was a burden the East German economy could not easily bear. In 1982 the Soviet Union reduced oil deliveries to East Germany by 10 percent from planned levels; the new reduced level remained in effect until 1985. An additional problem was the Comecon oil pricing system, which had benefited East Germany during the early 1980s. By 1983 and 1984, world market prices for oil were falling. But Soviet (intra-Comecon) prices continued to rise because of the five-year formula. After 1984 the East German leadership also faced the termination of a 1966 agreement with the Soviet Union on delivery of supplementary crude oil at particularly favorable prices. Declining oil prices did make East Germany's purchases of oil on the open market less expensive. However, Soviet oil amounted to 17 million tons of the 23 to 24 million tons of total imported oil. Because the Soviet, or Comecon, oil price was tied only retroactively to the world price, East Germany actually began paying prices higher than world market levels. Furthermore, East Germany's re-exports of oil products (13 million tons in 1984), mainly in the form of diesel fuel, from which the country derived a sizable portion of its hard currency, were affected immediately by the lower prices. Only in subsequent years would East Germany benefit substantially from the price drop. In late 1985, East Germany and the Soviet Union signed an agreement on trade plans for the 1986-90 five-year period. Trade turnover was to increase by 28 percent over the previous five-year period, and the East Germans were to export machinery for opencut mining, ore mills, and chemical works, as well as expertise and plant for Soviet consumer goods and food industries; consumer goods were also to increase by 40 percent. The Soviet Union agreed to supply quantities of crude oil, natural gas, hard coal, iron ore, rolled steel, timber, and cotton. At a Comecon meeting in late 1986, 150

The Economy
the Soviet Union announced that it would once again increase its export of oil to East Germany and the other Comecon states. Admittedly, the increase in supplies was only sufficient to match what these countries had been receiving in the late 1970s. It was clear in any case that the Soviet Union would retain its position as East Germany's primary trade partner. By the mid-1980s, a broad pattern of economic cooperation had emerged that involved coordination of economic plans, research projects, and joint investment projects. With regard to East Germany's major Comecon partners, official statistics list the major exports as tractors and agricultural machinery; transportation equipment, including rolling stock (to Czechoslovakia) and highway vehicles (to Hungary and Bulgaria); electronic equipment; data-processing equipment; and machine tools. In turn, East Germany also imported various kinds of machinery, including agricultural machinery from Czechoslovakia and Hungary and equipment for the food and construction industries from Poland. Other significant imported items were electronic equipment from Poland and electronic and pharmaceutical products from Hungary. Since the late 1970s, the role of East Germany's major non-Soviet Comecon trade partners-Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Romania-had declined somewhat, from 29.8 percent of total East German trade turnover to 23.2 percent in 1985. West Germany plays a relatively dominant role in East German trade, a fact that can be explained in part by West Germany's geographic proximity and traditional intra-German ties. Furthermore, West Germany's advanced industrial level and product quality plus its aggressive foreign trade-oriented business community also help to explain the country's prominent position as a trading partner. There is another reason, however, which is as complex as it is important. Since World War II, West German leaders have consistently treated trade with the Soviet Zone of Occupation, and later East Germany, as a special case-as domestic (intra-German) commerce, but with a difference. The grounds for this special treatment have been political; since the late 1940s, Bonn governments have sought to keep alive the idea of German reunification, to increase the contacts between Germans on both sides of the border, and to maintain the stability and well-being of West Berlin. One of the important means of achieving these ends has been the provision of an attractive economic package to the East Germans. For its part, the East German government has been willing to accept the advantages offered by West Germany, but not to the point of 151

East Germany. A Country Study acknowledging the linkages Bonn asserts. The European Economic Community (ECC), of which West Germany is a member, has also sanctioned the special relationship and excluded East Germany from ECC competence. This means that ECC quotas and tariffs, as well as its other regulations, do not apply to "intra-German" trade (on the West German principle that East Germany is not a foreign country). Furthermore, because trade between East Germany and West Germany is conducted in a clearing unit of account, East Germany can import some Western products by way of West Germany without spending hard currency. Among the special economic advantages East Germany obtains from West Germany are permanent, interest-free credit, referred to as "the swing," which in 1985 was set at 850 million D-marks; free entry of East German agricultural products into the West German market, where prices are maintained (under ECC agreement) at above world market levels; free entry (no tariffs) for East German nonagricultural finished products that are sold to West German buyers; substantial cash payments in hard currency for such things as construction and improvement of railroad lines and highways to and from West Berlin and transit visas for those West Germans using them; and exemption of goods sold to East German buyers from normal regulations concerning the value-added tax. The East German capacity to export industrial goods, so important in its Comecon trade, has played a much reduced role in its trade with West Germany, accounting for only about 10 percent of East German exports in the mid-1980s. Instead, raw materials and producer goods such as chemicals have been dominant, accounting for approximately 50 percent of total value. Other important East German deliveries were consumer goods (textiles and clothing, at 25 percent, being particularly important) and agricultural products (about 6 percent). On the East German import side, about 18 percent of the total consisted of investment goods and equipment, about 45 percent consisted of raw materials and producer goods, and an additional 25 percent was evenly divided between consumer goods and agricultural products. According to official sources, in 1985 East German exports to other market economies, most notably Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, Britain, and France, included chemical products, machinery and machine tools, and products of ferrous metallurgy. In turn, East Germany imported products of ferrous metallurgy, textiles and clothing, chemical products, and machinery for chemical engineering, among other items. Historically, the United States had demonstrated minimal interest in developing a trade relationship with East Germany. By 1985 152

The Economy
the United States, which in 1980 was East Germany's twelfth largest trade partner, had dropped to twenty-eighth place. As of 1985, principal East German exports to the United States included iron and steel (26.6 percent), machinery (20.3 percent), and rubber manufactures (15.4 percent). In turn, East Germany imported primarily foodstuffs (grain and soybeans); such goods comprised 76.4 percent of all imports from the United States. Generally, in the mid-1980s East Germany was particularly eager to trade with countries that could offer high technology (especially robots and electronics) and equipment for improving East Germany's energy and fodder supply situation. For this reason, East Germany's trade with Western countries had considerable importance for the economy, although its quantity was relatively modest by comparison with trade conducted with Comecon countries. In the mid-1980s, there were signs that East Germany hoped to foster its trade relations with countries in Southeast Asia and East Asia, particularly with China. In July 1985, following mutual visits of delegations, East German and Chinese representatives signed a long-term agreement that called for a substantial increase in trade from 1986 to 1990. Primary East German exports to China in the mid-1980s were agricultural products, textiles, and mineral and chemical raw materials. Two agreements reached during 1986 called for deliveries of railroad refrigerator cars and passenger coaches to China, East German trade with the developing world has not been significant in percentage terms, although its relative importance has increased slightly since the late 1970s. In specific cases, however, East Germany has placed some emphasis on trade with the countries in the Third World. Sometimes a political consideration has been dominant. East Germany has provided considerable support for national liberation movements and various governments in Africa, Asia, and Latin America (see The National People's Army and the Third World, ch. 5). The East Germans have supplied to governments such as those of Angola, Mozambique, and Ethiopia machinery and equipment on favorable credit terms. In other cases, economic factors have been dominant, as when East Germany evinced interest in oil imports from countries such as Mexico, Iran, and Iraq beginning in the late 1970s. During the previous FiveYear Plan (1981-85), East Germany chalked up large trade surpluses with developing countries. These surpluses were particularly helpful because some of the trade took place in freely convertible currencies. As a whole, at the end of the 1981-85 period the status of East German foreign trade was relatively favorable, particularly when 153

East Germany: A Country Study
viewed against the background of the seemingly intractable problems of the previous decade. As noted previously, during the late 1970s and into the early 1980s, East Germany had run dangerously high trade deficits. In 1980 East German indebtedness to the West amounted to approximately US$9 to US$10 billion, or more than the value of all the goods it sold on Western markets that year. In the late 1970s, the country was also running substantial deficits in its trade with the Soviet Union. Western banks, citing the growing East German international debt, began to restrict the availability of loans. In early 1982, the East Germans responded by cutting imports drastically and by expanding exports as much as possible. During the 1981-85 period, East Germany's exports rose by 64 percent while imports rose by only 37 percent. In early 1987, East Germany was again considered a prime customer for credit; as a result of their strategy, East German economic planners were well positioned to draw on Western credit if they chose to do so.

The Consumer in the East German Economy
The East German standard of living has improved greatly since 1949. Most observers, in both East and West, agree that in the 1980s East Germans enjoyed the highest standard of living in Eastern Europe. Major improvements occurred, especially after 1971, when the Honecker regime announced its commitment to fulfilling the "principal task" of the economy, which was defined as the enhancement of the material and cultural well-being of all citizens. Problems remained, however. In the mid-1980s, light industry and consumer goods industries were not performing as well as the economy as a whole, although according to official statistics the net monetary income of the population and retail trade turnover were growing at around 4 percent. Since the inception of the regime, the monthly earned income of the average East German has increased steadily in terms of effective purchasing power. According to the 1986 East German statistical yearbook, the average monthly income for workers in the socialized sector of the economy increased from 311 GDR marks in 1950 to 555 GDR marks a decade later, 755 GDR marks in 1970, and 1,130 GDR marks in 1985. Because most consumer prices had been stable during this time, the 1985 figure represented a better than threefold increase over the past thirty-five years. These figures do not mean very much by themselves, but they demonstrate that the upward trend has been consistent and positive. In 1986 at official exchange rates, 1,000 GDR marks amounted to just over US$500, only enough for a very modest subsistence 154

The Economy
in the United States. But in East Germany, the GDR mark can purchase a great number of basic necessities because the state subsidizes their production and distribution to the people. Thus housing, which consumes a considerable portion of the earnings of an average family in the West, constituted less than 3 percent of the expenditures of a typical worker family in 1984. Milk, potatoes, bread, and public transportation were also relatively cheap. Many services, such as medical care and education, continued to be available without cost to all but a very few. Even restaurant meals, concerts, and postage stamps were inexpensive by Western standards. In the early and mid-1980s, however, the government began to signal an intention to reduce somewhat the number of items subsidized by the state, which suggested that some price increases were in store for East German consumers. If one sought "luxury" items, such as stereos, automobiles, color televisions, and freezers, or even coffee and brandy, 1,000 GDR marks would not go very far, however. In the mid-1980s, prices for clothing (except for the most basic) and linens were relatively high. Products with a special claim to quality or stylishness, sold primarily in so-called Exquisit or Delikat shops, were also very expensive. In the mid-1980s, East Germans had no difficulty obtaining meat, butter, potatoes, bread, clothing, and most other essentials. Consumers, admittedly, did have to spend considerable time shopping for these items. Fruits and vegetables were more difficult to obtain than basic foodstuffs, particularly in the off-season, and their quality was often inferior to accepted standards in the West. With regard to housing, another necessity of life, the East German government did not take serious action to provide modern facilities until the late-1960s. The devastation of World War II had created tremendous housing problems in the Soviet occupation zone, particularly in the cities. Beginning in the late 1960s, the government initiated a major campaign to provid- modern housing facilities; it sought to eliminate the longstanding housing shortage and modernize fully the existing stock by 1990. By the early 1980s, the program had provided nearly 2 million new or renovated units, and 2 million more were to be added by 1990. As of 1985, progress in this area appeared to be satisfactory, and plan targets were being met or exceeded. Most government-built housing consists of high-rise apartments, often neither spacious, diverse, nor pleasing to the eye. Nevertheless, such apartments are functional, and they usually provide easy access to schools, transportation, restaurants, playgrounds, post offices, and supermarkets. In addition to this kind of housing, individuals can build their own 155

East Germany: A Country Study
homes (outside of East Berlin). About 15 percent of the units constructed up to 1981 were privately built and owned. In the mid-1980s, the availability of durable consumer goods and luxuries remained less satisfactory, though it was improving. Demand for automobiles as well as for such items as washing machines and refrigerators was greater than the supply available; however, improvement over the years had been steady. In 1985 about 99 percent of the households owned refrigerators, compared with only about 26 percent in 1965. For washing machines, the numbers for the same years had increased from 28 percent to 92 percent; for television sets the numbers had increased from 49 percent to 93 percent. Automobiles were more difficult to obtain, and delivery could come after as many as ten years of waiting. In 1985 about 46 percent of the households owned an automobile, and demand had not been satisfied. The quality of the most common automobile, the domestically produced Trabant, was not up to world market standards. Services are another important area of consumer welfare in any industrialized society. The term is used here in a broad sense to include retail trade, public transportation, and communications, as well as barbers, plumbers, and automobile service stations. In the mid-1980s, East German consumers continued to complain of both a shortage of workers in the service sector and deficient quality. Automobile repair facilities were inadequate, for example, as were supplies of spare parts. Although again improvements had been made-the number of supermarkets and other stores, restaurants, and service centers had risen significantly by the mid1980s-it seemed clear that meeting the needs of an increasingly prosperous society would remain a problem in East Germany for the foreseeable future. In the 1980s, the government acknowledged the existence of the problem and encouraged specialized private craftsmen and traders to help fill the void. East Germans compare their own overall situation as consumers with that of other East Europeans and are aware of their favored economic position in the Soviet bloc. However, they also compare themselves with the West Germans. A comparison between an East German and West German household's normal purchasing capacity has limited value, unfortunately, because the selection of goods available is vastly greater in West Germany and the material inputs and technical characteristics of West German products are usually of higher quality. In 1983, however, the Institute for Economic Research in West Berlin undertook one of its periodic studies in which the purchasing power of the GDR mark was measured against that of the West German D-mark (officially they are 156

The Economy
exchanged at 1 GDR mark per I D-mark). Typical "market baskets" of goods purchased in the two countries were the basis of comparison. When the consumption patterns of the East Germans served as the basis for deciding what should go into the market basket, the GDR mark purchased more than the D-mark. That is, were West Germans to purchase exactly the same things in the same proportions as their East German counterparts, the West Germans would have to pay more (24 percent more for an average worker's household with four members). If, however, West German consumption patterns were used as the basis for the comparison, the results would be reversed (the GDR mark then would purchase only 87 percent as much). The institute concluded that as a whole, the GDR mark could be considered to have 106 percent the value of the D-mark in purchasing power, an impressive gain over the 76 percent estimated for 1960, 86 percent for 1969, and 100 percent for 1977. Although in many ways the West German consumer had a more favorable position, with regard to both consumer options and income, the analysis clearly invalidated the view commonly held in the West that the GDR mark had very little purchasing power. The East German leadership acknowledged, as of 1985, that the quantity, range, and quality of many goods and services offered to the East German consumer needed improvement and that the public's desires needed to receive more attention. It should also be noted, however, that East German press, television, and radio reports frequently stressed the insecurity of life in the consumer society of West Germany. West German television broadcasts themselves did not convey an idyllic picture of consumer well-being, containing as they did substantial amounts of self-criticism and discussions of West German weaknesses.

The Five-Year Plan, 1986-90
The East German economic leadership published its directive on the 1986-90 Five-Year Plan during the Eleventh Party Congress of the SED in April 1986. The basic components of the "economic strategy for the 1980s," with the general goal of "intensification," remained in effect. Specific targets for the plan were relatively modest. National income was to grow at 4.4 to 4.7 percent annually (the average rate for 1981-85 was 4.4). Industrial goods production was to increase by 3.7 to 4.1 percent annually; the fastest growth was planned for the electrical engineering and electronics sectors. In general, the process of concentration in industry was to continue, with additional production stages integrated into the Kombinate. With 157

East Germany." A Country Study
regard to energy, the increasing use of domestic lignite was to continue. By 1990 lignite was to meet about 78 to 80 percent of primary energy needs. Nuclear energy would provide 15 percent of electric power by 1990. Apparently the 1986 nuclear reactor accident at Chernobyl in the Soviet Union and the worldwide decline in oil prices had not brought about a change in East Germany's energy policies, although public statements by East German leaders suggested that some reappraisal was occurring. Primary energy consumption as a whole was to grow by only 1 percent per year. In agriculture, crop and livestock production was to be stabilized at the 1985 level-actually an ambitious target since 1985 was a record year. The 1986-90 plan called for special efforts in what was called "key technology," which included microelectronics, modern computer and automation technology, industrial robots, and biotechnology. Inputs from these areas were expected to boost productivity in numerous ways. The plan expected the major impetus for economic growth to come from research and development, which was expected to improve production efficiency, increase the quality of existing production, and introduce new high-quality products. The government hoped in particular that in the coming five years the Kombinate would be able to generate from their own resources both a larger proportion of the investment funds they needed and new efficiency measures, technologies, and products. This objective entailed a modest degree of controlled decentralization, comparable in some respects with reforms that were being proposed in the Soviet Union. Western observers anticipated no radical procedural changes, however, given the caution customarily displayed by the East German leaders and their public praise for "tried-and-tested policy" and "the proven course." The 1986-90 plan targets suggested that after the strenuous efforts made in the early 1980s to increase exports-and the domestic bottlenecks these efforts produced, especially for consumers-there would be some effort to promote both investment and private consumption, although exports were still to have a high priority. Investment efforts would continue to focus on modernization and improved utilization of existing resources, but the government had relaxed somewhat the restrictive investment policies of the previous plan period. For consumers, the projected growth of retail trade turnover in manufactured goods (a measure of consumption) was 5.3 percent, compared with 4.2 percent during the previous period. Prices for basic consumer goods were to remain constant until 1990. The plan called for an increase in the supply of consumer electronics, technical goods, sports and leisure goods, furniture, building 158

The Economy materials, and quality clothing in particular. Finally, the housing program, long a high priority, would continue and would be virtually completed by 1990. Some Western observers suggested that, with regard to inefficiencies within the East German economic system, many of the most obvious and least disruptive measures to improve productivity had already been taken. In the mid-1980s, commitment to central planning remained strong and continued to limit the reform options available to the planners. Consequently, it was possible that the East German leadership would seek to expand the country's productive capacity through extensive and potentially expensive investment and technological upgrading. East Germany's improved credit status in the mid-1980s made this approach a viable option.

Current English-language sources of information on the East German economy are few in number. The East German government's Central Statistical Office publishes reports concerning fulfillment of annual and five-year plans in the English-language series entitled" Documents on the Policy of the German Democratic Republic." For a retrospective view of aspects of the economy's development, Economic Reform in East German Industry (translated from the German) by Gert Leptin and Manfred Melzer is helpful. An interesting study of consumer conditions in East Germany is The Consumer under Socialist Planning: The East German Case by Phillip

J. Bryson.
In German, two major sources of information are the East German Handbuch Deutsche Demokratische Republik (1984) and the twovolume West German DDR Handbuch (third edition, 1985), edited by Hartmut Zimmermann et al. The ongoing publications of the Institute for Economic Research in West Berlin, particularly its DIW Wochenbericht, are excellent sources of information. The East German Statistischesjahrbuch,with its yearly report of official statistics, is indispensable. The party newspaper Neues Deutschland and the monthly journal Wirtschaftswissenschaft provide ongoing accounts of economic developments. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Chapter 4. Government and Politics


I ill'*.





State emblem

THE GERMAN DEMOCR &TIC REPUBLIC (East Germany) is organized along the lines of the other East European communist systems that were created at the end of World War II in imitation of the Soviet model. The East German "socialist state" therefore embodies the principles of Marxism-Leninism as applied to specific national conditions. In theory, the principle of democratic centralism serves as the basis for "the realization of the sovereignty of the working people" and as the guiding principle for the construction of the socialist state. As in other Marxist-Leninist systems, the ruling communist party, in this case the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei DeutschlandsSED), determines the goals, policies, and actions of the government. The formal structure of government, as established by the Constitution of 1968 and the amendments of 1974, remained essentially unchanged in 1987. Constitutionally, the highest organ of state power is the People's Chamber, a unicameral legislature that theoretically controls the executive organs of government. In practice, however, political power is monopolized by the SED. Within the party, power is concentrated in the hands of the Politburo and the Secretariat, the party's two highest organs. As in the Soviet system, the general secretary is first among equals in these two bodies. Erich Honecker has held the top party post since 1971 (replacing Walter Ulbricht as first secretary; the title changed in 1976 to general secretary) and in 1976 also assumed the top state post, chairman of the Council of State, which he continued to hold in 1987. Having received a strong political endorsement from Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev, General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Honecker was re-elected head of the SED at its Eleventh Party Congress in April 1986. In the view of the party leadership, the government exists as the instrument through which the party administers the country and implements communist policies and programs. Although four other political parties have been allowed to exist under the "Alliance Policy" (Bindnispolitik), they have been tightly controlled by and subservient to the ruling communists. The existence of other parties and mass organizations has given the appearance of a pluralist system, but as of mid-1987 there had been no institutionalized political opposition. 163

East Germany. A Country Study Constitutional Framework The constitution of 1949, promulgated on October 7 of that year to coincide with the founding of the republic, was based on a parliamentary-democratic model. In fact, however, the various parliamentary-democratic provisions of the 1949 constitution did not hinder the emergence of a centralized and authoritarian political order under the hegemony of the SED. The original intentions of the constitution, framed under the specific historical conditions of the "antifascist democratic order" of 1945-49 (as SED historians refer to it), were simply altered over the years to incorporate changing realities. Thus, while many of the rights and guarantees of the original document were retained, a number of subsequent legal additions were made at the initiative of the SED with the concurrence of the People's Chamber. Constitution of 1949 East Germany's present Constitution is very different from the one adopted in October 1949 when the state was founded. The first constitution, based largely on an SED draft of September 1946 and intended for a united Germany, originated before the Soviet Union had decided to establish a socialist republic in its zone of occupation. The constitution both resembled and differed from Western parliamentary-democratic systems in various respects. With regard to state organization, the 1949 constitution resembled, at least superficially, the Basic Law (Grundgesetz) of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany). As in other parliamentarydemocratic systems, provision was also made for two legislative assemblies, the States Chamber (Liinderkammer) and the People's Chamber (Volkskamnmer), and the election of a president (Ministerpresident) by the party with the largest mandate in the People's Chamber. The president of East Germany, like the president of West Germany, had a very limited vote and was removable by a joint two-thirds majority vote in both houses. Lawmaking was essentially the job of the People's Chamber rather than the States Chamber, but the latter could propose draft laws to the former. The legislative process also exhibited important differences from the West German model; the East German States Chamber, for example, which represented the interests of the individual states, occupied a much weaker position than its West German counterpart. Article 51 stated that the members of the People's Chamber were to be elected in universal, equal, and secret elections based on the relative majority principle. Another ;nportant difference concerned the role of political parties in the government. According 164

Government and Politics
to Article 92, parties with at least 40 seats in the People's Chamber, which then had a total of 400 members, had the right to representation in the government. This policy was consistent with the SED's Marxist Alliance Policy, which stipulated that in order to achieve its aims, the party of the working class must initially work with and through other parties. It also ensured that if the SED were ever demoted to a minority position, its continued influence in the government would be safeguarded by the provision that any parliamentary party that commanded at least 10 percent of the total number of votes had a guaranteed share in the government. A set of basic human rights, including the right to strike (Article 14) and to emigrate (Article 10) retained features of a liberal Rechtstaat and formally guaranteed that sovereignty would remain vested in the people. The 1949 constitution was a compromise; it could have served either as a basis for building socialism or as the basis for a democratic all-German republic. Critics have pointed out that the absence of a genuinely independent constitutional judiciary rendered the document virtually meaningless, however. And, in fact, as time progressed, the authorities ignored most of its formal provisions and permitted the emergence of a centralized political order under the control of the SED. Several important amendments were made at the initiative of the SED in the eighteen years in which the constitution was in force. An amendment of August 1950 eliminated state parliaments and called for the election of parliamentary deputies through the creation of a joint platform and lists organized by the National Front, the umbrella organization of all political parties and mass organizations. A 1952 decision replaced the five states (Ldnder) with fifteen administrative districts (Bezirke) that were tied more directly to the central government. (The United States, Britain, and France do not recognize East Berlin as an administrative district.) This step created the necessary legal precedent for eliminating the States Chamber, which eventually was dissolved by a constitutional amendment in December 1985. A series of amendments known as the Law Toward the Completion of the Constitution were passed by the People's Chamber in March 1954, when the country was formally granted sovereignty by the Soviet Union. These amendments delineated the features of the country's new sovereignty and a formal military structure, which prepared the ground for the obligatory military service clause of 1955. And finally, upon the death of Wilhelm Pieck, a constitutional amendment of 1960 replaced the office of president with the Council of State, whose chairman became Ulbricht, first secretary of the SED. 165

East Germany: A Country Study Constitution of 1968
At the Seventh Party Congress of the SED in April 1967, Ulbricht called for a new constitution and declared that the existing constitution no longer accorded "with the relations of socialist society and the present level of historical development." A new constitution was needed to conform with the Marxist-Leninist belief in the progression of history and the role of the working class led by the SED. The new constitution was also to reflect the role of the state as the party's main instrument in achieving the goal of a socialist and eventually communist society. A commission in the People's Chamber was tasked in December 1967 to draft a new constitution. Two months later, the commission produced a document, which, after "public debate," was submitted to a plebiscite on April 6, 1968. Approved by a 94.5 percent margin, the new Constitution went into effect three days later. The new Constitution integrated all the constitutional changes that had taken place since 1949 into a new "socialist" framework, but it reduced certain rights provided in the earlier version. The new document unequivocally declared that "the leadership of the state is to be exercised through the working class and its Marxist-Leninist party," the SED. The 1949 constitution had declared Germany to be a "democratic republic," whereas the new one described East Germany as a "socialist state of the German nation." Under the old constitution, power was derived from "the people," while Article 2 of the new Constitution stated that power emanated from the "working people," who were implementing socialism under the leadership of the Marxist-Leninist party. Significant changes introduced into the 1968 document included Article 6, which committed the state to adhere to the "principles of socialist internationalism" and to devote special attention to its "fraternal ties" with the Soviet Union; Article 9, which based the national economy on the "socialist ownership of the means of production"; Article 20, which under pressure from the churches granted freedom of conscience and belief; Article 21, which maintained that the "basic rights" of citizenship were inseparably linked with "corresponding obligations"; and Article 47, which declared that the principle of "democratic centralism" is the authoritative maxim for the construction of the socialist state.

Amendments of 1974
In September 1974, Honecker declared in a statement to the People's Chamber that "it has become necessary to amend the present constitution.' Several important amendments that were passed on 166

Government and Politics
that day represented a fundamental revision of the 1968 Constitution. The 1974 amendments did not change the basic socialist order but encompassed important developments that had occurred after Honecker had replaced Ulbricht as first secretary of the SED in May 1971. First, the 1974 amendments eliminated all references to the German nation to reflect the Honecker regime's new policy of demarcation (Abgrenzung-see Glossary), which in 1972 replaced the policy of rapprochement (Anniiherung) and emphasized the ideological differences between the two Germanies. Instead of describing East Germany as a socialist state of the German nation, Article 1 was rewritten to proclaim that East Germany is a "socialist state of workers and peasants" and to abrogate the earlier commitment to the reunification of the two German states on the basis of democracy and socialism. The amendments also strengthened East Germany's ties to the Soviet Union. References to the German nation were eliminated from the Constitution, and Article 6, Section 2 proclaimed that the country is "forever and irrevocably connected to the Socialist Soviet Republic." The 1968 version had emphasized only comprehensive cooperation and friendship with the other socialist states. Articles 76 through 80 also significantly increased the role of the Council of Ministers (Ministerrat) and its chairman relative to that of the Council of State (Staatsrat). Honecker further put his stamp on the 1974 amendments by incorporating in Article 2 a goal first announced at the Eighth Party Congress in 1971: raising the standard of living, in material and cultural terms, was identified as the primary goal of the "advanced socialist society."

The State Apparatus
Honecker has defined the socialist state as the chief instrument for executing the public policy of the "toiling masses under the leadership of the working class." At the Tenth Party Congress in 1981, Honecker declared the "all-around strengthening of the socialist state an important task of the 1980s." An editorial in a subsequent issue of Neues Deutschlandreiterated that the "all-around strengthening of the socialist state is and remains for our party a basic issue of the revolution. . . Without a strong and wellfunctioning socialist state there can be no socialist achievements for the people." Although it is not the main center of political power, the state has an important political function insofar as it serves as the chief instrument through which the party seeks to implement its programs and achieve special social, economic, and political goals. Such a cooperative effort requires a well-elaborated system of coordination 167

East Germany: A Country Study
between the two entities. The party determines the boundaries within which the state is required to act. The need to coordinate the activities and functions of the party and state apparatuses has resulted in a significant degree of overlap in the policy area as well as in the personnel of both organizations (see table 12, Appendix A). Both apparatuses are responsible for a variety of similar activities; however, while the party is responsible for setting up the general guidelines and ideological content of specific policies and programs, the state is given the legal authority to execute them and to monitor their implementation on all levels of the hierarchy. The division of authority between party and state often results in conflict. Such conflict is based less on differences in ideology between members of the two apparatuses than on the issue of control and the most effective way of achieving the goals toward which the party's programs and policies are directed. However, the overlapping of membership between the party and state apparatusesespecially between their respective executive organs such as the SED Central Committee and the Council of Ministers-makes such a conflict manageable. Moreover, conflict between the two organizations is often the consequence of disagreement within the various branches of the party and state.

Council of Ministers
The Council of Ministers is the government of East Germany and the highest organ of the state apparatus. Its position in the system of government and its functions and tasks are specified in the Constitution as amended in 1974 as well as in the Law on the Council of Ministers of the German Democratic Republic of October 1972. Whereas earlier the Council of Ministers had been described as the "executive organ of the People's Chamber," the 1972 statute defined the council as the "government." According to the new law, the Council of Ministers was to "carry out the decisions of the party of the working class on the basis of the laws and decisions of the People's Chamber." The Constitution as amended in 1974 significantly expanded the functions of the Council of Ministers at the expense of the Council of State. In 1987 the Council of Ministers consisted of a chairman, two first deputy chairmen, and nine deputy chairmen, all of whom constituted an inner circle called the Presidium of the Council of Ministers. The chairman of the Council of Ministers, Willi Stoph, was head of the government (prime minister). Stoph, a representative of the old guard and a Politburo member since 1953, was again appointed council chairman in 1986. Unlike the nine deputy chairmen, the two first deputy chairmen, Politburo members 168

Government and Politics
Werner Krolikowski and Alfred Neumann, generally had not been responsible for specific ministerial portfolios. In 1987 four of the nine deputy chairmen represented the four non-SED political parties allowed to operate in East Germany: the Christian Democratic Union (Christlich-Demokratische UnionCDU); the Democratic Peasants' Party of Germany (Demokratische Bauernpartei Deutschlands-DBD); the Liberal Democratic Party of Germany (Liberal-Demokratische Partei Deutschlands-LDPD); and the National Democratic Party of Germany (NationalDemokratische Partei Deutschlands-NDPD). The four non-SED deputy chairmen were the minister of post and telecommunications, Rudolf Schulze of the CDU; the minister of environmental protection and water management, Hans Reichelt of the DBD; the minister of justice, Hans-Joachim Heusinger of the LDPD; and the chairman of the State Contract Court, Manfred Flegel of the NDPD. The other five positions held by deputy chairman on the Presidium of the Council of Ministers were occupied by members of the Central Committee of the SED. Two of the appointees, Giinther Kleiber and Gerhard Schurer (a candidate member) were also Politburo members. Of th thirty-three regular members on the council, including both ministers and nonministers, nineteen were concurrently members of the Central Committee of the SED, and two. were also Politburo members. The latter were Erich Mielke, minister of state security, and Hans-Joachim Bohme, minister of university and technical affairs. According to the Constitution, all members of the Council of Ministers are formally selected to their posts by the People's Chamber for a five-year term. In fact these decisions probably emanate from the Politburo and the Central Committee of the SED. The Council of Ministers is required to work closely with the People's Chamber, and according to its administrative guidelines the council must have all its legal drafts and decisions approved by the People's Chamber before they become law. In practice, the converse is true; the People's Chamber is obliged to approve those actions that are undertaken by the council and then routinely submitted to the legislature. Similarly, the People's Chamber is given the formal responsibility of selecting the membership of the council; in practice such personnel decisions are made by the Politburo of the SED. The legislature is then expected to approve the selections. As the de jure government, the Council of Ministers is responsible for providing the People's Chamber with the major legal drafts and decisions that subsequently are to be published in the name of the state. The work style of the Council of Ministers is a collective one. It normally meets on a weekly basis to discuss problems 169

East Germany. A Country Study
and plans put forward by individual ministers. It also confirms decisions that already have been made by the Presidium. The Presidium is of special importance because of its responsibility for handling the affairs of the council when the full body is not in session. Specific functional responsibilities of the Council of Ministers include directing and planning the national economy; solving problems growing out of membership in the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon-see Appendix B); coordinating and implementing social policy decisions that have been agreed upon with the support and concurrence of the Free German Trade Union

Federation (FreierDeutscher Gewerkschaftsbund-FDGB);instructing
and controlling subordinate levels of government, that is, the councils at district, county, and community levels that implement the laws and decisions of the central government; improving the functioning of the system of "democratic centralism" within the state apparatus; and carrying out the basic foreign policy principles of the socialist state.

Council of State
Designated as an organ of the People's Chamber, the Council of State was largely a creation of Ulbricht's during his tenure as first secretary of the SED. After Ulbricht was forced to relinquish that position in 1971, the prestige and authority of the council correspondingly began to decline. However, although it was no longer the de facto supreme executive organ, Honecker's assumption of the chairmanship of the Council of State in October 1976 represented a renewal of its importance. A similar move was made in the Soviet Union when Leonid Brezhnev became head of state. It is reasonable to assume that given East Germany's close adherence to Soviet practices, the increased invisibility of the Council of State since the late 1970s can be traced at least in part to parallel developments in the Soviet Union. Not unrelated to the takeover of the council's chairmanship by Honecker is the fact that after 1977 the number of individuals who were simultaneously members of the council and of the SED's Central Committee Secretariat increased. In referring to the Council of State, the Constitution declares that it will consist of the chairman, deputy chairmen, members, and secretary; it does not specify the number of deputy chairmen and members. In 1987, under the chairmanship of Honecker, there were eight deputy chairmen and seventeen members. In addition to Honecker, two of the deputy chairmen, Horst Sindermann and Willi Stoph, were members of the Politburo of the SED; Stoph was 170

Government and Politics also chairman of the Council of Ministers, and Sindermann was president of the People's Chamber. Four of the deputy chairmen of the Council of State represented the other four political parties, as did four of its seventeen members. The day-to-day functions of the council are carried on by a small bureaucratic staff consisting in 1987 of twenty offices and departments, all of which were headed by SED members. Despite the presence of non-SED members as deputy chairmen and members of the leadership group, SED control was guaranteed by the presence of Honecker, Stoph, Sindermann, and Egon Krenz, probably the four most powerful individuals in the country. In the mid-1980s, the functions performed by the Council of State included representing the country abroad and ratifying and terminating international treaties; supporting local assemblies in the implementation of their economic and budgetary plans; administering electoral laws that govern the selection of local assemblies on the community, city, county, and district levels; discharging responsibilities for the maintenance of the country's defense with the assistance of the National Defense Council; and administering the activities of the Supreme Court and the Office of the General Prosecuting Attorney to ensure that their actions are congruent with the Constitution and the civil law. In this area, the Council of State possesses additional responsibility for proclaiming amnesties and pardons.

The unicameral People's Chamber is described in the Constitution as "the supreme organ of state power in the German Democratic Republic." According to the Constitution, the "principle of the sovereignty of the people" defines the role and function of the chamber. Before 1963 the People's Chamber consisted of 466 members; since then it has consisted of 500 deputies, elected for a 5-year term. Men outnumber women deputies by more than a factor of two. Although the deputies of the People's Chamber are nominally responsible to their constituencies, they are constitutionally directed to "fulfill their responsible tasks in the interest of and for the benefit of the entire population." Article 55 of the Constitution directs the People's Chamber to elect a "Presidium for the duration of the legislative term." In 1987 the Presidium consisted of the president of the People's Chamber, a deputy president, three SED members, two LDPD members, a representative from each of the other three small parties, and two representatives from mass organizations. Sindermann was re-elected in 1986 to his third five-year term as Presidium president. 171

East Germany. A Country Study The membership of the chamber as a whole consists of representatives of the five political parties and members of four mass organizations: the FDGB; the Free German Youth (Freie Deutsche Jugend-FDJ); the Democratic Women's League of Germany (DemokratischerFrauenbundDeutschlands-DFD);and the East German Cultural League (Kulturbund der DDR). Because National Front policy has dispensed with competitive elections, a formal agreement assigns a fixed number of the 500 seats in the People's Chamber to each National Front organization according to a formula that has not varied since 1963. As the dominant party, the SED is alloted 127 seats, which constitute the largest bloc in the People's Chamber. The FDGB with sixty-eight seats ranks second. Each of the other political parties is allotted fifty-two seats, the FDJ forty, the DFD thirty-five, and the East German Cultural League twenty-two. Since many deputies of the four mass organizations are also party members, the SED's share of the chamber seats in effect exceeds 50 percent. Under the Constitution, the People's Chamber is responsible for determining "the basic principles of government policy and implementing those policies." It is theoretically empowered to elect, supervise, and recall all members of the principal executive organs of the government: the Council of State, Council of Ministers, chairman of the National Defense Council, attorney general, and Supreme Court justices. In practice, however, these positions are filled by party organs outside the chamber's control. The chamber is also constitutionally empowered to determine administrative principles, supervise government activities, and approve or renounce state treaties. In the 1980s, the chamber generally has met only three or four times a year for one-day sessions and has rarely cast a vote that is not unanimous. In earlier years, the chamber met more frequently. The Presidium of the People's Chamber is primarily a coordinating agent for chamber business. The fact that the chairmen of the parties and mass organizations do not occupy Presidium posts indicates its relatively insignificant function. The People's Chamber thus has comparatively less stature than the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union. The People's Chamber also has standing committees-fifteen as of the ninth electoral period in 1986-with jurisdictions corresponding to major areas of public policy, such as national defense, foreign affairs, industry, labor, social policy, and culture. Although the size of each committee is not fixed, chamber deputies generally constitute the majority of each committee's membership. Additional members, however, may be drawn from outside the chamber. Each 172

Government and Politics committee meets at least once a year to receive reports from SED officials, nominally satisfying the constitutional requirement that the government be accountable to the people. In practice, the People's Chamber has been relegated to a subservient role, and its function in the legislative field has been largely pro forma, approving measures authorized by the supreme organs of the SED. The deputies are constitutionally required to hold regular consultations with their constituents, providing them with reports on legislative activities; to explain the policy of the socialist state to the citizens; and to listen to the latter's criticism and suggestions. Even though such sessions are rare in practice, the People's Chamber is a vital government institution because the function of mobilizing public support for the goals of the party and state is deemed important by the party. Despite superficial similarities between the formal responsibilities of the chamber and those exercised by its parliamentary counterparts in Western Eutope, the People's Chamber does not function as an independent entity. Unlike the West German Bundestag, for example, the People's Chamber does not permit the articulation and legislation of opposing views. The SED, however, does ensure that the political parties and mass organizations that play important roles in mobilizing public opinion are given representation in the chamber. The basic rule is that opportunities to participate in the Marxist-Leninist system issue from constitutional guarantees as well as from the ideology of the party itself, which emphasizes mass participation in an effort to legitimize its policies. In the People's Chamber, however, the "right and obligation" to participate is based on the SED's conception of how much representation each political party and mass organization deserves. The party specifies what share of workers, bureaucrats, and members of the intelligentsia should serve in the People's Chamber as well as the ratio of men to women. At election time, the National Front presents a voting list to the electorate that is designed to conform with SED guidelines. The responsibilities of the chamber representatives can conventionally be divided into two distinct, though related, activities, both of which highlight the mobilization function of the People's Chamber. First, the deputies are expected to keep the population informed about major policy initiatives that have been presented by the SED to the People's Chamber for legislative action. This process, beginning with the decision of the party to put forward a legislative initiative and continuing through the actual publication and explanation of the law to the citizenry, theoretically requires continuous interaction between the deputies and the population. It is 173

East Germany: A Country Study
uncertain whether the flow of information and discussion is twoway, or whether in fact the People's Chamber is simply required to propagandize on behalf of party policies with little concern for the various public interests and demands as specific pieces of legislation are processed through the various phases of drafting and modification during the five-year legislative cycle. Second, the chamber's fifteen standing committees give deputies the chance to inform themselves about the activities of the various ministries within the Council of Ministers. In fact, there are limited opportunities for committee members to specialize in one or more substantive policy areas. Committees also have tbe right to require the presence of ministers as well as heads of other state organs at their deliberations. Obviously such contacts should increase the members' knowledge and political insight and enable them to convey a more realistic image of the legislative world and the impact of policy to the constituency. The actual degree of effectiveness of the People's Chamber is questionable. First, direct control over the operation of the People's Chamber by the SED is exercised through the network of overlapping memberships, which align the mass organizations to the party. For example, in 1985 the share of SED members among the mass organization deputies was as follows: sixty-one of the sixtyeight deputies of the FDGB were also members of the SED, as were thirty-six of the forty FDJ deputies, thirty-one of the thirty-five DFD deputies, and sixteen of the twenty-two deputies from the East German Cultural League. Although it was highly unlikely, deputies holding dual memberships theoretically could support positions of their organizations opposed to SED policy. Second, there is little evidence to suggest that genuine debate on legislation takes place within the chamber, although it could be assumed that the differing opinions represented in the legislature would engender occasional conflict between different legislative groups. The scant evidence to date suggests that the national legislature affirms but does not debate policy. Third, the amount of time actually spent in session is not published by the legislature. Overall, these factors suggest that the People's Chamber performs largely ceremonial and opinion-mobilizing functions, which, albeit important, do not make the chamber a key policymaking institution.

District and Local Government
East Germany has three territorial levels below the national level: 15 districts (Bezirke), 219 counties (Kreise), and some 90,000 towns and communities (Gemeinde). Each organ has an elected assembly (whose composition is controlled by local National Front committees) 174

Government and Politics and a council, which acts as the executive. Each assembly in turn features a structure of committees, composed of deputies and nondeputies, and organized around local policy issues such as local trade, supply, finances, construction, housing, traffic, transportation, health, socialist education, culture, youth, and sports. Over 400,000 citizens serve on assembly committees at some level, and 206,652 are deputies. The district assembly is the highest government organ in the district; it is elected every five years by the district electorate; the number of deputies in the assembly ranges from 190 to 210, depending on the size of the district electorate. The district council usually consists of some eighteen to twenty members; as a rule, SED members outnumber representatives of other political parties. Counties, as subdivisions of districts, replicate the district government structure on a smaller scale. In 1985 there were 191 urban counties (Stadtkreise) and 28 rural counties (Landkreise). The smallest unit of local government with an assembly and a council is the community, of which there were 7,567 in 1985. East German officials are quick to point out that citizen participation in local government exceeds that of Western democracies. However, the power of local government executives, who are selected by higher officials, and the narrow parameters of action set by the central government strictly circumscribe the effectiveness of citizen participation. Local governments have little independence in initiating policies; as a rule, local policy is derived from authorizing legislation or a ministerial order at the national level. On September 1, 1985, the Community Constitution (Gemeindeverfassung) was passed. This document strengthened democratic centralism on the local level. However, the central control of the state apparatus, described as a "unified state power," was not relaxed, and the power of the districts increased somewhat at the expense of the role of communities and towns.

Like all other aspects of the government administration of East Germany, the party is the ultimate decision maker in the operation of the legal system. The Constitution, however, provides for the right of citizens to a voice in the judicial process and the selection of judges, directly or through their elected representatives. It further provides for citizen participation in the administration of justice in an effort to deter crime. Basic guarantees for justice are said to derive from the "socialist society, the political power of the working people, and their state and legal system." 175

East Germany: A Country Study
In fact, separation of powers does not exist in the East German government. Although the Constitution asserts the independence of the courts, it also subordinates the judiciary to the political authorities and their political goals. Judgeships are restricted to communists of proven loyalty. The regime officially considers law and justice the tools for building a communist society and declares it the duty of all judicial and legal officers to serve this end. In effect, legal and judicial organs serve as agencies for promoting official doctrine, and the careers of personnel in the system are dependent on their political ratings as determined by higher state and party officials. At the top of East Germany's legal system are the Ministry of Justice, the Supreme Court, and the Office of the General Prosecuting Attorney (public prosecutor). In 1987 the heads of these offices were, respectively, Hans-Joachim Heusinger (LDPD), Heinrich Toeplitz (CDU), and Josef Streit (SED). The public prosecutor appoints prosecutors throughout East Germany, including those active in military courts; he can dismiss them, and they are "responsible to him and bound by his instructions." The Office of the General Prosecuting Attorney is also responsible for supervising "strict adherence to socialist legality and protecting citizens from violations of the law." The role of the Ministry of Justice, which is not mentioned in the Constitution, appears to be largely formal and propagandistic. The organs of justice are the Supreme Court, regional courts, district courts, and social courts. Military jurisdiction is exercised by the Supreme Court and military tribunals and courts. The specific areas of responsibility for each level of the court system are defined by law. Professional and lay judges of the courts are elected for five years by corresponding representative bodies, except district court judges, who are elected directly by the citizenry. They are subject to dismissal for malfeasance and for violations of law and the Constitution in the performance of their duties. Under the Constitution, the Supreme Court, as the highest organ of the legal system, directs the jurisdiction of all lower courts and is charged with ensuring the uniform application of the law on all levels. The highest court not only has the right of extraordinary appeal as a measure of control over the lower courts but on occasion serves as a link in the chain of command by issuing general legal directives. According to Article 93 of the Constitution, the Supreme Court "directs the jurisdiction of the courts on the basis of the Constitution, the laws, and their statutory regulations. . . . It ensures a uniform application of the law by all courts." The directive function of the Supreme Court goes far beyond that of supreme 176

Government and Politics courts in Western systems, which as a rule do not give legally binding instructions to the lower courts concerning specific questions of law. The Supreme Court is responsible to the People's Chamber and, between the latter's sessions, to the Council of State. Internally, the organization of the high court consists of an assembly, a presidium, and three functional administrative divisions known as collegiums for criminal justice, military justice, and civil, family, and labor law. The assembly, which is directed in its plenary sessions by the Supreme Court Presidium, consists of fifteen directors of the district courts, the chairmen of the higher military courts, and all professional judges. Each district court is presided over by a professional judge and two jurors in cases of original jurisdiction and by three professional judges in cases of appellate jurisdiction. The district courts have appellate jurisdiction in civil cases and original jurisdiction in major criminal cases such as economic crimes, murder, and crimes against the state. The county court is the lowest level of the judiciary system, and each of the country's counties has at least one suclh court, which is presided over by a professional judge and two lay assessors. The majority of all criminal and civil cases are tried at this level; county courts have jurisdiction over cases not assigned elsewhere and civil cases involving only small amounts of property.

In addition to the regular law courts, East Germany has also developed an extensive system of community and social courts (Geselschaftliche Ge,hte), known as either conflict or arbitration commissions (Konflikt und Schiedskommissionen). The first are formed in state-owned and private enterprises, health and educational institutions, offices, and social organizations. The second are established in residential areas, collective farms, and cooperatives of manual laborers, fishermen, and gardeners. Created to relieve the regular courts of their minor civil or criminal case loads, the jurisdiction of the courts applies to labor disputes, minor breaches of the peace, misdemeanors, infringements of the law, truancy, and conflicts in civil law. These courts are composed of lay jurors who are elected by their respective constituencies. Party officials at the community level generally influence the nomination of jurors to the community courts and exercise considerable influence on the outcome of cases heard at this level. The Socialist Unity Party of Germany The most important political institution in East Germany is the ruling communist party, the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED). The SED was 177

East Germany: A Country Study
founded on April 19, 1946, in the Soviet zone of occupation through a merger of the Social Democratic Party of Germany and the Communist Party of Germany, the two major left-wing political organizations in the eastern part of Germany. The two parties had played significant roles in the Weimar Republic but had been suppressed after 1933 when the Nazis took power. Since its inception, the SED, in which the Communists achieved early dominance over the Social Democrats, has undergone a number of organizational as well as ideological changes. According to the late Peter Christian Ludz, a recognized analyst of East German politics, perhaps the most important change was the SED's shift from a totalitarian party to one that exhibited more "consultative-authoritarian" tendencies. Significant developments have occurred since the early 1980s. In the 1970s, the SED became known as a leading exponent of Soviet-style Marxism-Leninism. East Germany was then a staunch defender of the Soviet ideological view in Eastern Europe and a critic of the more liberal Eurocommunism in Western Europe. However, the 1980s have signaled an important change in East German attitudes toward the Soviet Union and its role as a model to be emulated by other socialist countries. Although Moscow is still considered the ultimate guarantor of communist rule in East Germany, the leader of the socialist community, and East Germany's primary economic partner, since the early 1980s, East Germany has no longer viewed the Soviet Union as a model of socialist development worthy of emulation in all respects. The Soviet Union's leadership of the socialist community remains unquestioned, but the days of blind devotion appear to be over. East German officials argue that their country is at a different stage of development and that they must seek solutions that correspond to local conditions, a theme increasingly heard elsewhere in Eastern Europe since the early 1980s. Although attempts to carve out a separate identity as a socialist state have occurred before, particularly under Ulbricht in the 1960s and the early 1970s, the SED generally has been seen as an orthodox ally of Moscow and a staunch defender of Warsaw Pact unity. However, during the mid-1980s, a trend toward greater autonomy has been evident in East German ideological pronouncements and domestic policy initiatives.

Ideology and Politics
The SED's most important connective tissue remains MarxistLeninist ideology. Ideology has retained an overriding significance even in the Honecker era, where it has played the role of an integrating and mobilizing force in society. Ideology determines 178

Government and Politics the norms of conduct, guides social and political action, and integrates the leadership elite. In the SED's proclamations on the "unity of ideology, party, and economy," ideology appears first. Since the Ninth Party Congress in 1976, these factors have been linked and defined as "characteristic of the nature of party work." Even at the Tenth Party Congress in 1981 when Honecker reversed the order and spoke of the "unity of politics, economy, and ideology," he still emphasized the significance and the "superiority of MarxistLeninist ideology." The SED considers itself fraternally linked to the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU); it considers the attitude toward the CPSU and the Soviet Union to be "a criterion of loyalty toward Marxism-Leninism." An "uncompromising struggle" against all appearances of "anti-Sovietism" is mandatory for all party members. One of the foremost concerns of both the Ulbricht and the Honecker regimes has been the stabilization and legitimation of SED rule in East Germany. Upon its formation in 1949, the East German regime was a provisional political entity that lacked legitimacy in the eyes of most of its citizenry. Unlike the communist parties in Eastern Europe, the SED generally has been able to avoid major internal conflict since the last massive party purge initiated by Ulbricht in 1957. The erection of the Berlin Wall in 1961, the promulgation of the New Economic System at the Sixth Party Congress inJanuary 1963, and the emergence of a generation of political leaders that had matured in East Germany since the war were all factors that helped stabilize SED rule in the country. The first major event of the 1970s occurred when Ulbricht, who had been party leader during the two previous decades, was forced to relinquish his control over the SED in May 1971; he was allowed, however, to retain his chairmanship of the Council of State and full membership in the Politburo until his death in August 1973. Ulbricht's replacement, Erich Honecker, brought about a series of changes in party policy. Among the more important was the SED's declaration that East Germany had abandoned its goal of national reunification with West Germany, which Ulbricht had consistently stressed and codified in an article of the 1968 Constitution. Honecker also emphasized East Germany's special relationship with the Soviet Union. Under Ulbricht the SED had proclaimed that its brand of socialism was equal to that of the Soviet Union, and Ulbricht had clashed with Moscow over a number of issues, including the question of relations with West Germany and the Soviet Union's relations with other East European states. When Honecker assumed leadership of the SED in the spring of 1971, 179

East Germany: A Country Study this conflict came to an abrupt end. On April 15, 1971, the SED Politburo declared that the directives of the Twenty-fourth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in Moscow in 1971 were of "general theoretical and political importance" and were binding on the SED in its search for solutions to the "basic question of the creation of a developed socialist society in the GDR." This policy ended the long-standing divergence between the SED's and the CPSU's interpretation of Marxism-Leninism. Concepts that had originated under Ulbricht, such as the understanding of socialism as a "relatively independent socioeconomic system developing on its own base," the "developed social system of socialism," and the "socialist human community" were cast aside. Instead, the Honecker regime spoke of a "developed socialist society" and in 1973 introduced the expression "real existing socialism," which eventually became the hallmark of the Honecker era. At the Ninth Party Congress in May 1976, the notion of a harmonious "socialist human community" in which class differences were almost obliterated was superseded by the idea of a "class society of a special type." Honecker resurrected the class nature of society by emphasizing the leading role of the working class and, by extension, its vanguard, the party. Late in the Ulbricht era, the regime magnified the significance of the Council of Ministers and the Council of State as regulators of economic and social life and downgraded the party's function to a supervisory role. By contrast, Honecker once again reversed the relationship between the party and the state. Honecker spoke of a new "social phase" beginning under his leadership, and he made it clear that the role of the SED would increase. The SED's "chief task" was to ensure all-around growth in social and economic well-being. These improvements would result from "increasing efficiency, scientific-technical progress, and higher labor productivity." The scientific-technical revolution of the 1960s was to become scientific-technical progress in the 1970s. The leadership considered it necessary to close the ever increasing gap in living standards between those with technical skills and those without. Thus, in the mid- and late 1970s, the party brought science and technology increasingly under its wing. Numerous scientific councils were created and attached to the East German Academy of Sciences, the Academy of Social Sciences of the Central Committee of the SED, and other party organizations. Because the establishment of these scientific councils allowed the SED to plan, coordinate, and supervise research topics and outcomes much more comprehensively, in the 1970s the party became the main integrative force in .the domain of science and technology. 180

Government and Politics









1~ GRUP .


Figure 9. Schematic Organization of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany

The Honecker era also has seen a steady increase in the use of the instruments of coercion-the civil and political police and the military-and in the 1980s these sectors consumed an ever growing proportion of the national budget. The trend indicates that greater influence by the security and defense organs has paralleled the increase of the party's power.

Organization and Structure
The SED is hierarchically organized in the manner of the CPSU (see fig. 9). Party organizations are organized territorially into local, district (Bezirk), regional (Kreis), and national bodies. Like the CPSU, the SED operates on the Leninist principles of democratic centralism, party-mindedness, and criticism, all of which are binding on the membership of the party. In principle, democratic centralism requires full discussion of party programs by lower units and the adherence of lower party bodies to decisions taken by higher party bodies. Party-mindedness denotes the concepts of "party spirit" and "party consciousness," which demand the loyal 181

East Germany: A Country Study
commitment of every party member to the party program. Criticism and self-criticism require members to recognize their own shortcomings and to remain willing to discuss ways to overcome their faults in open party meetings. The SED is a mass political organization. In 1986 the SED had approximately 2.3 million members and candidates (nonvoting members); in other words, one of every six citizens over the age of eighteen belonged to the party. Furthermore, the social composition of the party reflected the leadership's efforts to ensure that the proportional representation of various social groups roughly corresponded to the social structure of the society as a whole. In 1986 that breakdown was as follows: 58.1 percent of the members were workers; 4.8 percent were farmers and peasants; 22.4 percent were members of the intelligentsia; and 14.8 percent were other workers. Males constituted some 66 percent of the SED's membership (see The Political Elite, ch. 2). The educational level of the SED has risen considerably since 1949. By the late 1970s, every third graduate of a university or technical college was a member of the party. Within the SED, slightly fewer than one-third of its members possessed a degree from a university or a technical college. Furthermore, every secretary of the district or county leadership had a degree from one of the higher educational institutions. In May 1984, the Politburo stated that 72.6 percent of the leading cadres had graduated from high school, and 52.4 percent had a diploma from a university or a technical college. Entrance to a university or a technical college, however, is made considerably easier by membership in the SED. Conversely, professional mobility within the party apparatus, as well as within the state apparatus, is still increasingly dependent on the ability of members to acquire advanced degrees.

The Politburo is the party's highest decision-making body. It addresses the fundamental political problems of the party, state, economy, and culture, and it is responsible for formulating domestic, foreign, military, and security policies. The Politburo normally meets once a week, and although its meetings are conducted in secret, other members of the Central Committee, the Secretariat, and members of the Presidium of the Council of Ministers are admitted to the proceedings. Meetings are chaired by General Secretary Honecker, and decisions are arrived at by a consensus vote, although certain individuals within the Politburo, particularly longstanding members, play a major or even dominant role in determining the positions and decisions of the executive body. The 182

Government and Politics
Politburo is required to inform the Central Committee about the various personnel and policy issues and problems discussed during its weekly sessions. At the regular plenums of the Central Committee, held at least once every six months, one or more members of the Politburo report on issues discussed in Politburo sessions. These reports are subsequently discussed by the Central Committee membership and are then published in an abbreviated form in the SED official daily, Neues Deutschland. The Politburo is composed of the highest officials of the party, the state, the security organs, the largest mass organizations and, unlike the Politburo of the CPSU, all ten members of the Secretariat, which directs the party apparatus through the Central Committee departments. Between 1976 and early 1984, the only additions to the ranks of the Politburo were Ginter Schabowski, then the chief editor of Neues Deutschland, who became a candidate member at the Tenth Party Congress in 1981; and Egon Krenz, who was appointed in 1983 and made a Central Committee secretary at the same time. Krenz, as the youngest member of the Politburo, replaced Paul Verner as the unofficial number two man in the party leadership. After his induction into the two top party organs, Krenz became increasingly visible at Honecker's side, f, eling speculation that the SED chief had already designated him as the heir apparent. In May 1984, four high-ranking officials, three of whom were already candidates, were made full members of the Politburo: Werner Jarowinsky, deputy minister of trade and supply; Giinther Kleiber, deputy chairman of the Council of Ministers and an expert on agriculture and an occasional emissary to the Middle East; Schabowski, editor-in-chief of Neues Deutschland; and Herbert Haber, the SED's expert on relations with West Germany. In contrast toJarowinsky, who had served as a candidate for twentyone years, Haber became a full member directly, bypassing candidate status. The promotion ofJarowinsky and Kleiber raised the level of economic expertise in the Politburo. Also named to the Secretariat was Konrad Naumann, a full member of the Politburo and then head of the SED's East Berlin party organization. It was announced that Verner, veteran member of both the Politburo and the Secretariat, was relinquishing his post because of illness. Three weeks later, Krenz and Gunter Mittag were made deputy chairmen of the Council of State, East Germany's "collective presidency," chaired by Honecker. These new appointments significantly strengthened Honecker's position as undisputed leader of the party and appeared intended to strengthen his commitment to detente with West Germany. However, at the Eleventh SED Central Committee Plenum on 183

East Germany: A Country Study
November 22-23, 1985, it was announced that Naumann and Haber had been dropped from the Politburo and the Secretariat "for reasons of health." Although Haber departed largely because of health problems, Naumann's removal was probably politically motivated. Known for his opposition to Honecker in several key areas of domestic and foreign policy, Naumann enjoyed backing from Moscow and possessed a long record as a hardliner in his approach to relations with West Germany and his opposition to the SED's policies on culture and religion. Naumann's political demise continued when three days later he was replaced by Schabowski as East Berlin's party chief. Naumann's removal eliminated Honecker's chief rival and further strengthened the East German leader's position. In November 1986, the Politburo consisted of twenty-two full and five candidate members. The Politburo also included the head (Erich Muickenberger) of the Central Party Control Commission, an appeals board for issues related to SED membership rights. The mass organizations have been represented in the Politburo by the head of the labor unions and the head of the youth organization, both having considerable experience as party officials. At the Eleventh Party Congress in April 1986, there were few surprises among those elected to join the ranks of the Politburo. The decisive changes had already been made at the party's Eleventh Central Committee plenum in November 1985, when Naumann and Habuv were dropped from the Politburo and Secretariat. Although there were no further dismissals at the congress, four new full members were added: Heinz Kessler, minister of defense and a Honecker confidant, and three regional secretaries, Werner Eberlein, Siegfried Lorenz, and Hans-Joachim B6hme, all experienced technocrats. These moves, as well as CPSU general secretary Mikhail S. Gorbachev's strong political endorsement of Honecker at the congress, helped the East German party chief reinforce his strong position in the top party ranks. In 1987 the first secretaries of two district party organizations (Berlin and Cottbus) were members of the Politburo. As a result of the personnel changes, six districts were represented in the Politburo by their party heads; the three new district representatives were Schabowski and Politburo candidates Gerhard Miller (Erfurt), and Werner Walde (Cottbus). Rejuvenation of the ranks of the Politburo was clearly in progress. However, the only two women members, Ingeborg Lange and Margaret Miller, candidates for thirteen and twenty-three years, respectively, were not selected to full membership.

The Secretariat is the "staff" of the Politburo, in charge of 184

Government and Politics
implementing the policy and personnel decisions of the Politburo, with which it is closely linked. All major political decisions are made by the Politburo and the Secretariat. Unlike the CPSU, the members of the SED Secretariat usually are also full or candidate members of the Politburo. In 1987 there were ten secretaries, nine of whom were full Politburo members and one, a woman, a candidate member. At the Eleventh Party Congress in April 1986, the East Berlin district party chief, Schabowski, was appointed a Central Committee secretary. The average age of the secretaries was fiftynine. Each secretary directs a personal staff of three to five individuals. Politburo members who also are secretaries manage staffs consisting of Central Committee members, who in turn supervise smaller staffs for special assignments. The Secretariat is in charge of the daily work of the party; it supervises internal party affairs and directs the state and government apparatuses. The specific responsibilities of the Secretariat include managing elections, formulating cadre policy, operating party schools, and drafting and implementing the directives of the Politburo to the leaders of the SED district and county organizations. The Secretariat also directs the working organ of the Central Committee, the Central Committee apparatus, which consists of over 40 departments with approximately 2,000 members as well as the central party institutes (the Central Committee's Academy of Social Sciences, the Institute for Marxism-Leninism, the Central Institute for Socioeconomic Management, and the Karl Marx Party College). These departments work closely with the individual ministries of the Council of Ministers. Critical mechanisms by which the SED maintains ongoing contact with the CPSU are the various departments of the Secretariat, which are expected to maintain close working relations with their Soviet counterparts, as well as those of the other "fraternal parties."

Central Committee
The Central Committee of the SED is designated by party statute as the highest executive organ of the party and is responsible for carrying out the decisions of the party congress. When the New Economic System was launched in the 1960s, the Central Committee changed from being a purely acclamatory and declamatory assembly to one increasingly involved in the substantive matters of party organizations and policies (see Economic Policy and Performance, ch. 3). Although the Central Committee performs a variety of important functions, its most important responsibility consists of bringing together diverse points of view, which contributes to the 185

East Germany: A Country Study formulation of short- and long-term SED policies. This role is particularly important in the area of economic planning and administration, which remains a key policy area. In this respect, the Central Committee provides a sounding board for positions that the Politburo subsequently takes on various issues. During its plenary sessions, usually between two to four per year, the Central Committee routinely examines the work of the Politburo and Secretariat, and individual committee members evaluate Politburo reports that fall within their areas of expertise. Both the Politburo reports and the policy discussion papers presented at the party plenums are important to the functions of the Central Committee; they present guidelines for running the government and party apparatus. On occasion the Politburo directs the Central Committee to create special commissions, composed of members of the Council of Ministers and the Presidium, which are tasked with exploring areas of topical interest to the Politburo or the Secretariat. District and Local Party Levels The SED is organized according to a "territorial-industrial" principle. The units of the party are organized on a hierarchical basis, conforming at the higher levels to administrative divisions within the country. The work of each subordinate party organization is subject to supervision and control by a superior one. In theory these restrictions and duties are counterbalanced by the "right of discussion and the election of party organs." The basic party organizations, called Grundorganisationen (GOs) are "the foundation of the party"; they are organized primarily at places of work. There are several kinds of GOs: the industrial party organization, (Betriebsparteiorganisation), the residential party organization, (Wohnparteiorganisation), the local party organization, (Ortsparteiorganisation), and basic party organizations in the armed forces. A GO is formed when there are at least three members in a factory, cooperative, office, institution, administration, social welfare enterprise, urban or rural residential area, enterprise, university, or armed forces unit. To conform with the administrative divisions of the country, the GOs are integrated into district, city, and city-district party organizations, all within regional party organizations. Although a GO is formed when at least 3 party members are present in an area, a section party organization (Abteilungsparteiorganisation-APO) may be formed in enterprises having more than 150 party members. The duties of the APOs entail selection and dismissal of members and encouragement of higher productivity, greater civic consciousness, and strengthened ideological awareness. 186

Government and Politics The APO thus occupies a key position in the implementation of the party's program. According to SED statutes, the main task of the GO is "to secure the politico-ideological and organizational influence of the party in the realization of its leading role in all social spheres." The activity of the GO is oriented also toward "mobilizing and organizing the masses to fulfilling state, economic, and cultural tasks." Party group organizers and their deputies meet regularly, at least once a month; the meetings are convened by the GO or APO party secretary, and members are briefed on the party work in their organizational area. The GO is an important conduit in the flow of information between the lower levels and the leading organs of the party and government, requisite to directing and planning the society. The GO is also designed to represent a forum for the public to express their opinions, concerns, interests, approval, or disapproval of policies and activities. There are two kinds of GOs worthy of special note: those in government ministries and those in the armed forces. The former are responsible to the party level with jurisdiction over an entire ministry or regional government organization; the GOs report to the corresponding geographical (local, district, or national) party authority, thus enabling the party to maintain and enhance its control over the activities of the state organs. In 1983 there were 57,782 GOs and 26,386 APOs, or a total of 84,168 organizations. In 1987 no figures were available concerning the number of GOs and APOs having large memberships. The official view is that these basic units
secure the party's "political ideological influence . . . in all spheres

of social life"; for the individual member, they are said to be "a political home in which the member is firmly rooted and in whose communist sphere he feels at home and from which he draws new strength." Judging by the directives issued for the election of party organization leadership in the fall of 1983, the chief task of party groups at the lower levels is to achieve particular economic goals. Although the "heart and soul of party work" are proclaimed to be "political and ideological work with (he people," the "criteria . . . for judging the results of political leadership" by party organizations deal almost exclusively with the details of economic matters.

Selection and Training Procedures
At the Tenth Party Congress in 1981, SED party chief Honecker stressed that "the continuous increase in the leading role of the party in all spheres of society is an objective necessity." The SED leadership holds that the "cadre question" is decisive and that the 187

East Germany: A Country Study
best way to secure the party's "leading role" is to train loyal cadres who demonstrate devotion to the party, unconditional submission to the leadership, have the proper qualifications, and undergo ideological instruction. In practice, every member of the SED who is active within the party or state apparatus must undergo continuous education during the course of his or her political career. The organizational backbone of the party is the cadre, the leadership at all levels of the party organization. The selection and training of cadres, carried out by the higher levels of the party apparatus, is designed to strengthen internal party structures and to ensure the unity of the SED. Cadre selection is an involved procedure that begins with the Nomenklatur (see Glossary), a listing of the most critical positions in the party and state apparatuses over which the party exercises its appointment power. Because the Nomenklatur system does not provide a means for determining which individuals will ultimately qualify to take key positions in the party and state apparatuses, the SED has employed three interrelated programs for "long-term and purposeful cadre development." Known as the cadre reservoir, cadre recruitment, and cadre reserve, these programs attempt to meet the constant demand for recruits in the dual partygovernment system. The cadre reservoir consists of all graduates of institutions of higher education. By the time they reach adolescence, students are required to demonstrate whether or not they are interested in pursuing a career in the cadre system. Through the FDJ and the FDGB, the party provides those students interested in joining the cadre system with special opportunities for developing such career interests and skills. The FDJ is particularly important in this regard, having provided a ladder of advancement for many leading members of the East German Nomenklatur. Individuals who demonstrate the motivation and ability for cadre training programs are moved into cadre recruitment, the second phase of the system. Cadre recruitment involves an extensive training program, which the individual must complete in a period of two to five years, depending on the nature of the position for which the candidate undergoes training. At the time an individual is accepted into the cadre recruitment program, usually upon graduation from a secondary institution, the person's name is also entered on the Nomenklatur, even though he or she cannot move into such a position until formal completion of the recruitment program. The final part of the program requires the trainee to undergo a more intensive program in the cadre reserve, which prepares the individual for entrance into the party or state apparatus. An 188

Government and Politics
appropriate training program ensures that the individual will be fully prepared to undertake full-time cadre responsibilities. Although the duration of such a program varies, each trainee is required to work within the guidelines of a "cadre plan" and a long-term "cadre and educational program," both of which terminate at the end of a five-year planning period. Once they have entered the appropriate apparatus, party and state functionaries are required to undergo extended periods of additional training. Official training manuals recommend an ongoing process of formal and informal training. The industrial and technological nature of East German society requires that political leaders have more than an awareness of technology, science, and the principles of large-scale organization. Party schools, the primary educational institutions for the cadres, offer courses of instruction in Marxism-Leninism and the technical and social sciences. An early 1980s listing of the available institutions for advanced cadre training included factory and regional schools of MarxismLeninism, district party schools, various correspondence study courses, five-year study programs offering diplomas in the social sciences, and, finally, participation in special lecture series and evening courses at local educational institutions. For years, nearly all middle and higher functionaries have been indoctrinated at party schools, and to a great extent the same has been achieved for lower functionaries. In the early 1980s, over 80 percent of the approximately 80,230 party secretaries who headed the basic SED organizations had spent more than a year at a party school, and 64.5 percent were graduates of universities or professional schools. Although it is difficult to evaluate in concrete terms the results of the selection and training programs, the educational level of the SED as a whole has risen substantially, as has the educational level of members of the party and state apparatuses. It is unclear to what extent subjective factors such as personality and political and family connections may bias both the administration and the outcomes of such programs. The need of the SED for individuals who can perform the administrative and political work required by a complex society is undisputed, however. Party Congresses According to SED statutes, the party congress is the supreme organ of the SED. Since 1971 congresses have been held every five years, the most recent being the Eleventh Party Congress in April 1986. In theory the party congress sets policy and elects the leadership, provides a forum for discussing the leadership's policies, and undertakes activities that serve to legitimize the party as 189

East Germany: A Country Study a mass movement. It is formally empowered to pass both the Party Program and the Statute, to establish the general party line, to elect the members of the Central Committee and the members of 'the Central Auditing Commission, and to approve the Central Committee report. Between congresses the Central Committee may convene a party conference to resolve policy and personnel issues. In the spring of 1971, the Eighth Party Congress rolled back some of the programs associated with the Ulbricht era and emphasized short-term social and economic problems. The SED used the occasion to announce its willingness to cooperate with West Germany and the Soviet Union in helping to solve a variety of international problems, particularly the future political status of Berlin. Another major development initiated at the congress was a strengthening of the Council of Ministers at the expense of the Council of State; this shift subsequently played an important role in administering the Main Task program. The SED further proclaimed that greater emphasis would be devoted to the development of a "socialist nationalist culture" in which the role of artists and writers would be increasingly important. Honecker was more specific about the SED's position toward the intelligentsia at the Fourth Plenum of the Central Committee, where he stated: "As long as one proceeds from the firm position of socialism, there can in my opinion be no taboos in the field of art and literature. This applies to questions of content as well as of style, in short to those questions which constitute what one calls artistic mastery." The Ninth Party Congress in May 1976 can be viewed as the midpoint in the development of SED policy and programs. Most of the social and economic goals announced at the Eighth Party Congress had been reached; however, the absence of a definitive statement on further efforts to improve the working and living conditions of the population proved to be a source of concern. The SED sought to redress these issues by announcing, along with the Council of Ministers and the leadership of the FDGB, a specific program to increase living standards. The Ninth Party Congress initiated a hard line in the cultural sphere, which contrasted with the policy of openness and tolerance enunciated at tfie previous congress. Six months after the Ninth Party Congress, for example, the East German government withdrew permission for the singer Wolf Biermann to live in East Germany. The congress also highlighted the fact that East Germany had achieved international recognition in the intervening years. East Germany's growing involvement in both the East European economic system and the global economy reflected its new international status. This international status and the country's improved diplomatic and political standing were the 190

Government and Politics
major areas stressed by this congress. The Ninth Party Congress also served as a forum for examining the future challenges facing the party in domestic and foreign policy. On the foreign policy front, the major events were various speeches delivered by representatives of West European Marxist-Leninist parties, particularly the Italian, Spanish, and French, all of which expressed in varying ways ideological differences with the Soviet Union. At the same time, although allowing different views to be heard, the SED rejected many of these criticisms in light of its effort to maintain the special relationship with the Soviet Union emphasized by Honecker. Another major point of emphasis at the congress was the issue of inter-German d6tente. From the East German side, the benefits were mixed. The East German regime considered economic benefits as a major advantage, but the party viewed with misgivings the rapid increase in travel by West Germans to and through East Germany. Additional problems growing out of the expanding relationship with West Germany included conflict between Bonn and East Berlin on the rights and privileges of West German news correspondents in East Germany; the social unrest generated by the "twocurrency" system, in which East German citizens who possessed West German D-marks were given the privilege of purchasing scarce luxury goods at special currency stores (Intershops); and the ongoing arguments over the issue of separate citizenship for the two German states, which the SED has proclaimed but which Bonn as of 1987 had refused to recognize. During the Ninth Party Congress, the SED also responded to some of the public excitement and unrest that had emerged in the aftermath of the signing of the Helsinki Accords, the human rights documents issued at the meetings of the 1975 Conference on Secutrity and Cooperation in Europe. Before the congress was convened, the SED had conducted a "People's Discussion" in order openly to air public concerns related to East Germany's responsibility in honoring the final document of the Helsinki conference. The Tenth Party Congress, which took place in April 1981, celebrated the status quo; the meeting unanimously re-elected Honecker to the office of general secretary, and there were no electoral surprises, as all incumbents except the ailing seventy-sixyear-old Albert Norden were returned to the Politburo and the Secretariat. The congress highlighted the importance of policies that had been introduced or stressed at the two previous congresses and that had dominated East German life during the 19 70s. As in the past, Honecker stressed the importance of the ties to the Soviet Union. In his closing remarks, he stated: "Our party, the SED, is linked forever with the party of Lenin, [the CPSUJ." A delegation 191

East Germany. A Country Study
led by Mikhail Suslov, a member of the Politburo of the CPSU and his party's leading ideologue, represented the CPSU at the SED congress. Honecker reiterated earlier positions on the relationship between the two Germanies, stressing that they are two sovereign states that have developed along different lines since World War II and that their differences must be respected by both sides as they continue efforts toward peaceful coexistence despite membership in antagonistic alliances. In his speeches, Honecker, along with other SED officials, devoted greater attention to Third World countries than he had done in the past. Honecker mentioned the continually increasing numbers of young people from African, Asian, and Latin American countries who receive their higher education in East Germany, and he referred to many thousands of people in those countries who have been trained as apprentices, skilled workers, and instructors by teams from East Germany. The bulk of the Central Committee report delivered at the opening session of the congress by the general secretary discussed the economic and social progress made during the five years since the Ninth Party Congress. Honecker detailed the increased agricultural and industrial production of the period and the resultant social progress as, in his words, the country continued "on the path to socialism and communism." Honecker called for even greater productivity in the next five years, and he sought to spur individual initiative and productivity by recommending a labor policy that would reward the most meritorious and productive members of society. The Eleventh Party Congress, held April 17-21, 1986, unequivocally endorsed the SED and Honecker, whom it confirmed for another term as party head. The SED celebrated its achievements as the "most successful party on German soil." praised East Germany as a "politically stable and economically efficient socialist state," and declared its intention to maintain its present policy course. East Germany's successes, presented as a personal triumph for Honecker, marked a crowning point in his political career. Gorbachev's presence at the congress endorsed Honecker's policy course, which was also strengthened by some reshuffling of the party leadership. Overall, the Eleventh Party Congress exhibited confidence in East Germany's role as the strongest economy and the most stable country in Eastern Europe. Gorbachev praised the East German experience as proof that central planning can be effective and workable in the 1980s. Official statements on the subject of foreign policy were mixed, particularly with respect to East Germany's relations with West Germany and the rest of Western Europe. Honecker's defense of 192

Government and Politics
his policy of "constructive dialogue" appeared in tune with Gorbachev's own calls for disarmament and dtente in Europe. However, the SED leadership made it unequivocally clear that its foreign policy, including relations with West Germany, would remain closely coordinated with Moscow's. Although Honecker's criticism of West Germany was low key, Gorbachev's was sharp, attacking Bonn's participation in the United States Strategic Defense Initiative and the alleged "revanchism" in West Germany. However, after a final round of talks with Gorbachev, Honecker signed a hard-line communiqu6 that openly attacked the policies of the West German government. Overall, Gorbachev's statements suggested that the foreign policy emphasis would be on a common foreign policy adhered to by all members of the Warsaw Pact under Soviet direction. Until the Eleventh Party Congress, East German leaders had maintained that small and medium states had a significant role to play in international affairs. As a result of Soviet pressure, such statements have disappeared from East German commentary on foreign policy. Giinther Tschacher, an official in the Academy of Social Sciences of the SED Central Committee, echoed the new thinking on domestic policy in a West German interview, when he remarked that although the SED is enthusiastic about Gorbachev's reforms in the Soviet Union, it does not necessarily consider these applicable to East Germany. Tschacher flatly rejected the notion that the Soviet Union's new course is necessarily relevant for East Germany, stating that this would "run counter to the independent policy of each party." He claimed it had become an established fact that "each party develops its policy independently." Alliance Policy East Germany follows the pattern of the Hungarian, Czechoslovak, and Polish "multiparty" systems in permitting the existence of small parties that accept the leadership of the ruling communist party and are its allies in the construction of socialism. In all cases, the parties merely exist to further the goals of the ruling Marxist-Leninist party and have no opportunity for genuine independent political action. In East Germany, this system is known as the Alliance Policy (Bindnispolitik), and the four parties subordinate to the SED are known as "alliance parties." These are the Christian Democratic Union (Christlich-Demokratische UnionCDU), the Liberal Democratic Party of Germany (LiberalDemokratische Partei Deutschlands-LDPD), the Democratic Peasants' Party of Germany (Demokratische Bauernpartei Deutschlands-DBD), and the National Democratic Party of Germany 193

East Germany: A Country Study

Liberal Democratic Party of Germany (LDPD)

National Democratic Party of Germany (NDPD)

Democratic Peasants' Party of Germany (DBD)

Christian Democratic Union (CDU)

Figure 10. Logos of the Alliance Parties

(National-Demokratische Partei Deutschlands-NDPD) (see Council of Ministers, this ch.; fig. 10.). In 1982 the small parties registered the following memberships: the CDU-125,000; the LDPD-82,000; the DBD- 103,000; and the NDPD-91,000. In contrast to the one-party system in the Soviet Union, these smaller parties assist the SED in reaching certain key sectors of the community, such as the intelligentsia, businessmen, and manufacturers who are not members of the SED. Their chief function is securing the support of these groups for the aims of the party and the state and integrating into the socialist system citizens who are critical of the SED or who, because of their social or political background, cannot become members in the SED. Although represented in the People's Chamber, the alliance parties do not compete with SED delegates for seats or power. Christian Democratic Union The CDU is the only party in East Germany with a counterpart of the same name in West Germany; both parties have the 194

Government and Politics same roots. Originally CDU members came from the ranks of farmers, craftsmen, small manufacturers, and Christians, both Protestants and Roman Catholics. At the time of its formation in 1945, the CDU was an independent political party representing middleclass interests. By 1948, however, the original CDU leadership had been removed or suppressed, and the party had lost its independent status. Since that time, Western observers have considered the CDU an auxiliary of the SED, useful for its appeal to the Christian, middle-class constituency. Since the CDU's Sixth Party Congress in 1952, when it embraced socialism and affirmed that a socialist society affords the best opportunity to practice Christianity, the party has been modeled on the SED's organizational pattern. Gerald Goetting, chairman of the CDU in 1987, has held that post since May 1966 and has been active in the party since the immediate post-World War II period. Goetting has been a deputy in the People's Chamber and a member of the Presidium of the National Front since 1950. Since 1960 Goetting has been a deputy chairman of the Council of State, and he was president of the People's Chamber until he was replaced in 1976 by Horst Sindermann. At that time, Goetting was moved to the presidency of the League for Friendship Among Peoples (Liga fur V61ker Freundschaft), which oversees the activities of twenty-five or thirty individual friendship committees involved in international relations. Liberal Democratic Party of Germany The founders of the LDPD considered the tradition of German liberalism as the legacy of their party. In general, the LDPD adhered to a policy of private ownership and individual initiative. Upon its establishment in 1945, its leaders announced that "the liberal creed and democratic political conviction" would form its political ideology, but by 1948 the SED had subjected the LDPD, like the CDU, to pressures to conform to the official communist party line. By the early 1950s, the LDPD had completely reversed its opposition to socialism and, in effect, had become an auxiliary of the SED. Since 1967 the LDPD has been chaired by Manfred Gerlach, who, like the CDU's Goetting, has been a deputy in the People's Chamber, a member of the Presidium of the National Front since 1950, and a deputy chairman of the Council of State since September 1960. Democratic Peasants' Party of Germany Formed by the SED on April 12, 1948, in a calculated attempt to increase its influence among farmers, the DBD adopted a platform that advocated land reform and the strengthening of bonds 195

East Germany: A Country Study between farmers and workers. The DBD became a primary instrument in the drive to collectivize agriculture, an important SED goal. Like the other alliance parties, the DBD became an auxiliary of the SED and has not diverged from the official SED party line since its founding. In May 1982 Ernst Mecklenburg took over the chairmanship of the DBD from Ernst Goldbaum, who had become a member of the KPD in 1919 but left the SED in 1948 to form the DBD. Mecklenburg, who has been a deputy chairman of the Council of State sinceJuly 1982, is also a deputy in the People's Chamber.
National Democratic Party of Germany

The NDPD was originally established as an instrument of communist influence over two specific segments of the population previously excluded from political life: discharged German servicemen and the 2 million members of the National Socialist German Workers' Party (Nazis) in East Germany. The NDPD's appeal was based on nationalism and patriotism, and its principal goals were to develop support for the security services and to recruit experienced personnel to serve in that capacity. In 1987 Heinrich Homan continued to chair the party, a position he has held since November 1972. Homan has served as a deputy in the People's Chamber and as a member of the Presidium of the National Front. The Party and the Media The Politburo of the SED ultimately decides what is printed, published, and produced by the mass media in order to ensure ideological and political uniformity and conformity. The SED Central Committee's Department of Agitation and Propaganda issues instructions to the editors of party and mass organization publications on appropriate news topics and how they should be treated; the department ensures that the mass media carry out their assigned functions. Editors also receive directives on key campaigns, such as the Five-Year Plan, the National Front candidates during East German elections, military education in the schools, Soviet foreign policy initiatives, the deployment of United States missiles in Western Europe, and the Strategic Defense Initiative. Because the SED controls all aspects of public life, it can plan headlines in advance. Anniversaries are a typical case, particularly special anniversaries such as the establishment of the People's Police (Volkspolizei), the National People's Army, civil defense services, and border police. Similar considerations apply to historical events, such as the Russian Revolution, the Liberation (Befreiung) in 1945, the establishment of the East German state and the SED, the 196

Government and Politics destruction of Dresden, and the erection of the Berlin Wall. Preplanned congresses, the Leipzig Fair, visits by foreign politicians or by East German politicians abroad, Warsaw Pact force maneuvers, and the Soviet space program are standard topics for East German media consumers. The single most important subject covered is the economy and the current Five-Year Plan. For the SED, newspapers are part of the campaign to build socialism and communism as defined by the SED leadership in consultation with the leadership of the CPSU. Thus, the SED not only attempts to "plan" the news but also to monopolize news sources. All international news, with minor exceptions, is channeled to the press from the country's sole news agency, Allgemeiner Deutscher Nachrichtendienst (ADN), which is under the direction of the Press Office of the chairman of the Council of Ministers. Most items in Neues Deutschland and in Der Morgen are credited to ADN. Neues Deutschland, in keeping with its function as the organ of the SED and the leading daily newspaper of East Germany, is assigned the best facilities and is one of the few publications to send correspondents abroad. With a circulation of nearly I million, it serves as the most authoritative paper. The SED is also responsible for the leading district newspapers, such as the Leipziger Volkzeitung. Each of the other four smaller parties has a national daily. They are the Bauern-Echo (DBD), National-Zeitung (NDPD), Neue Zeit (CDU); and Der Morgen (LDPD). These newspapers are not widely known outside the parties they serve. Tribune, the organ of the FDGB, andJunge Welt, the daily of the FDJ, have much higher circulations than the publications of the four allied parties. The only significant SED-controlled dailies that are not official organs of parties or mass organizations are the Berliner Zettung (BZ) and BZ am Abend. The chief reason for maintaining such a relatively expensive news apparatus despite the uniformity and redundancy is the need to keep up appearances as a semipluralistic society, which is regarded as important for East Germany's influence abroad. Internally, these newspapers have their assigned segments of the population to influence, and the style and subject matter of the papers vary according to the segment of the population addressed. Like all key institutions, newspapers are given "plans" to fulfill. Non-SED party organs receive their plans and instructions from the aforementioned Press Office. The relatively high rates of newspaper consumption and almost universal ownership of radios and television sets make the public media important instruments of social integration. There are 38 daily newspapers, having a total circulation of 8.3 million. 197

East Germany: A Country Study
Regional and national SED papers (including Neues Deutschland) account for about two-thirds of the total circulation. Junge Welt accounts for about 10 percent, and Tribune accounts for about 5 percent. Newspapers published by the 4 noncommunist parties amount to less than 5 percent of the total. In addition, there are more than 500 monthly magazines and weekly newspapers, ranging from Furdich, an illustrated women's weekly, to Einheit, a publication for party functionaries at all levels. Many periodicals focus on the special concerns of various professional groups. After starting on an experimental basis in 1952, television was officially introduced in 1956 under the name Deutscher Fernsehfunk, which was changed in 1972 to Fernsehen der DDR in accordance with the SED policy of Abgrenzung. Because the SED regards all radio and television programs as politically significant, producers, directors, and editors are expected to bear in mind the ultimate purpose of their medium when creating their programs. The government operates two color television channels, which together offer nineteen to twenty hours of daily programming. Since 1968 television has been under the control of the State Committee for Television of the Council of Ministers; an analogous committee administers radio. The chairmen and deputy chairmen of these committees are appointed by the chairman of the Council of Ministers. Other members are appointed by the chairmen of the respective committees. Heinrich Adamek, who has served as chairman of the State Committee for Television since its inception, is a member of the SED Central Committee. The SED is keenly interested in using radio to influence people abroad and uses Voice of the GDR (Stimme der DDR), directed at German speakers outside East Germany, and Radio Berlin International, which broadcasts in numerous foreign languages, for this purpose. External consumers receive news of the world communist movement, East Germany and its politics and policies, and an SED view of world developments. The authorities restrict the influx of Western publications, which are available only to government, party, economic, and educational institutions. Publications from Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union are freely permitted but rarely purchased. The electronic media are a different matter. Largely because of the central location of West Berlin transmitters, West German radio and television are received in East Germany, except for the southern mountain regions. Intershops carry decoder attachments required for clear reception of color broadcasts. As a practical matter, it is not possible to prohibit viewing of Western television, not the least because it is a prime source of news and entertainment for the government 198

Government and Politics elite, who are also avid viewers of internationally syndicated United States programs, which are shown with German-language dubbing by West Berlin stations. Television thus promotes awareness of the higher standard of living in West Germany and provides divergent perspectives on world events. Public surveys have shown that East Germans are considerably more familiar with West German politicians than their own leaders. Since the mid-1970s, Western television has become an increasingly important source of news about political and economic conditions in East Germany itself. In late 1971, when Western television journalists were first regularly permitted in East Germany, they gained quick recognition. Some were even approached on the street by East German citizens and asked to do reports on specific issues. The penetration of Western media places a special burden on SED officials. Both the domestic electronic and the printed media continue to practice censorship. Certain kinds of economic, social, and military data are not disseminated, and no statements directly critical of either East Gt.rman or Soviet leaders are permitted. At the same time, many sensitive topics are covered, if only in response to Western television broadcasts. East German television thus has gradually moved in the direction of more candid, if still biased, reporting. East German television journalists correctly perceive they are competing for the attention of East German viewers, and efforts to develop more interesting reporting styles and to be responsive to public opinion have become a source of professional pride. Political Stability, Legitimation, and Succession Despite its continuing search for political legitimation, since its formation East Germany has enjoyed a relatively stable political system. During the span of Ulbricht's rule, from approximately 1950 to 1971, only the workers' uprising of 1953 and one largescale purge of the SED ranks, which occurred in 1957, disrupted his regime. As of 1987, there had been no major upheavals during the sixteen years of Honecker's rule, although there had been periodic personnel reshuffling in the ranks of the party and the government, and important changes had occurred in the occupational and educational backgrounds of political decision makers. These changes reflected the rise to power of a more educated and technologically aware generation, a trend that is especially apparent in the rosters of the SED Central Committee and the Council of Ministers. Although stability marked the East German regime in the 1970s, three noteworthy political changes took place during that decade. The first and most significant political change occurred when 199

East Germany.: A Country Study
Ulbricht was removed from the post of first secretary. Ulbricht's ouster was extremely significant even though it was not followed by a purge of the party and state apparatuses. As a result of this change, over time the status of certain key SED officials was enhanced. In virtually every instance, the individuals involved were close associates of Honecker's or people responsible for policy areas that Honecker, the general secretary, considered necessary for stabilizing his leadership. Of particular importance in this regard were the promotions to full Politburo membership of Werner Krolikowski and Werner Lamberz, individuals with substantive experience in the agitation and propaganda apparatuses of the SED. The promotions of Krolikowski and Lamberz reflected Honecker's heightened sensitivity to the need to improve the public's level of political education. The second important change within the leadership of the SED took place on October 29, 1976, when Willi Stoph and Ginter Mittag were returned to their former respective positions as chairman of the Council of Ministers and secretary in charge of the economy on the Secretariat of the Central Comittee. The previous incumbents in these positions, Sindermann and Krolikowski, had been thrust into the political limelight in the aftermath of Ulbricht's death in August 1973 but replaced by Stoph and Mittag three days later. The move may have been motivated by Honecker's desire to bring back two key veterans who had gained considerable political influence during the turbulent 1950s and 1960s. Honecker also used the occasion to assume the post of chairman of the Council of State in addition to his position as general secretary. The third change in the SED hierarchy occurred in the spring of 1978 after the death of Politburo member Lamberz in a helicopter crash in Libya. Lamberz's death was significant because of his close ties to Honecker; after Honecker he was the party's second most important ideological spokesman, and he was a leading proponent of the regime's increasingly ambitious policy toward Africa. Lamberz was replaced by Joachim Hermann, former chief editor

of Neues Deutschland.
Honecker's control of the party and state apparatuses has been secure since the early 1980s, and his leadership has been able to balance domestic policy priorities with expanding foreign policy demands. Honecker also has devoted considerable attention to the concerns of lower ranking functionaries and initiated a more active program of agitation and propaganda within the party and state structures than had been the case under Ulbricht. An enduring problem for the SED has been the desire to attain political legitimacy in the eyes of the East German public. The 200

Government and Politics multiparty system introduced at the end of the 1940s left some room for political participation outside the SED, but repression constituted a vital element of the system. Repressive factors included the stationing of Soviet troops on East German terr tory, a sealed border, and an extensive network of political informants employed by the State Security Service (see Agencies of the Ministry of State Security, ch. 5). None of these aspects of the political system can be challenged by public questioning or debate. The regime erected the Berlin Wall in August 1961 to halt illegal emigration after 2.5 million people had escaped to the West. Since that time, the SED has attempted to strengthen its political authority through repressive measures when necessary, to encourage increased political participation and influence public opinion, and to improve the standard of living and economic performance. The SED has continued to place significant emphasis on mass participation. The regime attempts to demonstrate that "socialist democracy," a term used to describe public participation, is an integral part of the political process. The concept, however, emphasizes not the individual rights and liberties that define citizenship in Western Europe and North America but the opportunities for. individuals publicly to participate in organized political activities. Thus it is common for East German sources to emphasize the variety of opportunities for participation. For example, in the mid1980s, approximately 195,000 citizens were members of national or local assemblies; 500,000 citizens were active in commissions of these local assemblies; 335,000 citizens participated in various committees of the National Front; 95,550 working people were engaged in the almost 10,000 production consultative bodies of the country's industrial enterprises; and 105,000 parents were active members of the parent associations that worked with teachers in the country's educational system. The political function of mass participation is largely one of mobilization for goals that have already been articulated by the party and state. Nonetheless, the public has some influence over both the content and the administration of policies formulated by the political leadership. Whether in the end the country's citizens supported the goals of the party and state apparatuses remains an open question. Despite its extremely powerful position in the society, since the mid-1970s the SED has been aware of the importance of public opinion. East Germany's research institutions have been particularly active in analyzing opinion on such issues as work, family life, the position of women in society, and leisure. The focus and results of public opinion research are carefully guarded secrets, and 201

East Germany: A Country Study
it is known that the Politburo itself makes the final determination on basic emphases and content of the Central Research Plan. Two party institutes have played especially important roles in this area: the Institute for Opinion Research of the Central Committee of the SED and the Institute for Marxist-Leninist Sociology of the Academy for Social Sciences. In the mid-1980s, empirical research provided the SED with an up-to-date profile on the attitudes and feelings of the public across a range of major sociopolitical issues. Such data have provided the party with information that has helped it more effectively to communicate its goals and purposes to the public. Since the 1970s, the SED has deliberately attempted to make respondents feel that their needs were being taken seriously. In other words, since the 1970s the regime has used public opinion research as another means to develop political legitimacy. Given the authoritarian character of the regime, it is worth considering whether citizens were willing to answer questions in a totally honest and open manner. The SED has used the instruments of socialization and control to achieve political passivity on the part of society, if not legitimacy. For example, the East German educational system has had an impact on the political values and expectations of the East German citizenry (see The Educational System, ch. 2). The military is also an important instrument for the inculcation of regime values (see The National Security System and the Citizen, ch. 5). Hence, there is reason to suggest that many of the social and political goals of the SED have been accepted by large parts of the public. (How strongly they support these goals is another matter entirely.) Still, the country's increased vulnerability to the industrial West, and particularly to West Germany, made the problem of legitimacy a troubling one for the SED. Despite efforts to instill an "East German consciousness" in the 1970s and 1980s, closer ties between the two German states have made that task increasingly difficult. All that can be said is that the political leaders remained aware of their legitimacy problems.

Foreign Policy
In the mid-1980s, East Germany enjoyed diplomatic recognition with over 130 countries. It was a member of the Soviet-directed Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon) and the Warsaw Pact military alliance. In September 1973, both Germanies were admitted to membership in the United Nations (UN), and East Germany has been active ever since in advancing Soviet and East European positions in that international forum. During the same period, it also became active in the developing world, particularly d ifrica. 202

Government and Politics
The evolution of foreign policy is intimately tied to the condition of inter-German relations and to the domestic situation. For the first two decades of its political existence, East Germany had been effectively excluded from international recognition by West Germany's Hallstein Doctrine, which required that diplomatic relations be broken with any country that recognized East Germany. The "diplomatic wave," a metaphor used to describe the rush of foreign governments to recognize East Germany, came after the Four Power Agreement on Berlin (1971) and the Basic Treaty (1972) had been signed. East Germany's foreign policy successes have also served domestic political purposes. Since the early 1970s, the regime has used the international recognition it has secured outside of Eastern Europe as a means to impress the East German public with its permanence and legitimacy. In light of East Germany's newfound diplomatic legitimacy, many of the traditional aspects of inter-German politics have become a significant aspect of broader East-West relations. In Third World countries, the two German states compete with each other for influence on behalf of their respective alliance systems. Within the UN, the two states have found themselves on opposite sides of most issues, from north-south economic and technology questions to the subject of arms control.

Principles of Foreign Policy
From the earliest days of the republic, East Germany's foreign policy has been concerned with its survival as a separate political entity, international recognition, solution to the "two Germanies problem," accommodation to Soviet hegemony in Eastern Europe, and development within Comecon and the Warsaw Pact. The state gained international recognition, signed treaties with West Germany, and solidified its position in Comecon and the Warsaw Pact by becoming the Soviet Union's staunchest ally. Since the late 1970s, East Germany's foreign policy has been extended to include global interests, reflecting its position as one of the world's leading industrial states. Five principles, which are established in Article 6 of the Constitution, underlie the foreign policy of East Germany: a "perpetual and irrevocable alliance" with the Soviet Union; an "inseparable" membership in the socialist community of states, toward whose members East Germany is committed in friendship, universal cooperation, and mutual assistance; the support of all peoples "who are struggling against imperialism and colonialism"; peaceful coexistence of states with different social orders; and support for peace 203

East Germany." A Country Study
and cooperation in Europe, a peaceful order throughout the world, and universal disarmament. East Germany's most important external contacts are with members of the Warsaw Pact and Comecon, West Germany, and selected countries of the Third World. The determinant factor in East Germany's foreign policy is its integration into the Soviet sphere of influence following World War II.

Relations with the Soviet Union
The Soviet Union's relationship with East Germany is unique among Soviet relationships with East European states because of the substantial degree of East German dependence on the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union created the East German state; hence, the latter owes its continued existence to Moscow. East Germany has traditionally served three main functions for the Soviet Union. Strategically, it is the most important buffer state, the politicomilitary bulwark guaranteeing the Soviet security system in Eastern Europe. Second, East Germany is a vital source of economic assistance to the Soviet Union and provides advanced technology and manufactured goods unavailable in other East European countries. Third, East Germany is one of the most loyal replicas of the Soviet political system and offers both ideological and institutional legitimacy for the Soviet-Marxist model. In the beginning of the 1970s, East Germany became increasingly significant in advancing Soviet foreign policy goals toward other members of the "socialist state community," the North Atlantic Treaty organization (NATO) countries (particularly West Germany), and the Third World. In each case, East Germany supported and refined Soviet policy and long-term strategy toward these different arenas. It is also necessary to stress that although the activities of East Germany in international politics could not be undertaken without Soviet support, it is wrong to assume that subordination to Soviet direction reflects disinterest on the part of the East German regime. By working closely with the Soviet Union, East German leaders have been able to advance their own goal of promoting international recognition for their regime. In the 1980s, however, a change of attitude has taken place in East Germany's relations with the Soviet Union. In the mid-1980s, the Soviet Union disagreed with Honecker's attempts to pursue relations with West Germany despite the fact that the latter had accepted United States Pershing missiles on its soil. Although Moscow's leadership remains unquestioned, East German officials now argue that their state is at a different stage of development


Erich Honecker receiving a welcome from residents of Alma Ata, the capital oJ Kazakhstan, during his 1983 visit to the Soviet Union Courtesy Panorama DDR

and therefore must search for solutions that correspond to local (national) conditions. This view has resulted in a creeping diversity within the bloc that is well illustrated in Soviet-East German relations. In recent years, a trend toward greater autonomy also has become discernible in East German domestic policy; although East Germany professes enthusiasm about Gorbachev's attempts to reform the Soviet economy, it does not view the changes as a model for its own problems.

Determinants of Policy Toward the Soviet Union
In the mid-1980s, close working relations between the Soviet Union and East Germany were based less on personality factors (as had been the case during the Ulbricht era) and more on structural considerations that increasingly linked the two countries together. The emergence of East Germany as a diplomatic and political force was in large measure an outcome of Soviet detente policies toward the West. However, these same detente policies, at least toward West Germany, found allies in the very highest circles of the SED elite, who wished to continue them despite the cooling of superpower relations in the early and mid-1980s. East Germany has demonstrated an ability to collaborate effectively with its larger partner across a range of issues. Several basic determinants will play crucial roles in defining the potential as well as the limitations of this relationship. 205

East Germany. A Country Study
In the mid-1980s, a potential source of trouble in the East German-Soviet relationship lay in the SED leadership's unwillingness to emulate Gorbachev's economic and political reform program. The East German regime treats Gorbachev's reform program with caution and argues that because of East Germany's economic successes of the 1970s and 1980s, the Soviet economic reforms are not relevant to its own situation. In a February 1987 meeting with Soviet foreign minister Eduard Shevardnadze, Honecker was reported to have said that "the good [economic] balance of the year 1986 presents a solid basis for the further dynamic development of the [East German] economy." The East German regime fears that Soviet political reforms, which include Gorbachev's calls for glasnost, or openness, and the use of the secret ballot and nomination of rival candidates for party elections, will lead to social unrest if applied in East Germany. The relationship between East Germany and the Soviet Union will be influenced by the evolution of inter-German relations. In the mid-1980s, inter-German ties created strains in the East GermanSoviet relationship. In the early and mid- 1980s, despite the decline in superpower detente because of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the declaration of martial law in Poland, and the stationing of United States intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs) in West Germany, the Honecker regime sought to maintain good relations with the Bonn government. The Soviet Union was particularly upset with the West German decision to allow deployment of Pershing II missiles on its soil. The Soviet Union's inability to dissuade West Germany from stationing American missiles led to a deterioration of Soviet-West German relations. Yet, for economic and political reasons, the Honecker regime sought to insulate inter-German relations from this broader international conflict. Economically, in the 1980s East Germany's average annual intake of West German hard currency visa fees, minimum exchange rate revenues, and private transfers amounted to US$1 billion per year. Politically, the East Germans argued that the smaller powers could play a role in building bridges between NATO and the Warsaw Pact when the superpowers found themselves in conflict. The discord between East Berlin and Moscow led to open disagreements. The traditionally maverick Hungarians backed East Germany, while East Berlin's nominal hardline ally in Warsaw Pact affairs, Czechoslovakia, along with Poland, supported the Soviet Union. In September 1984, the disagreement culminated in Honecker's indefinite postponement of a planned visit to West Germany. East Germany's active presence in the Third World will continue to make the prospect of cooperation with the Soviet Union 206

Peace Rally held during the the sixth Festival of Friendship between Soviei and East German youth in Kiev in 1983 Courtesy Panorama DDR

an attractive one for both partners. Indeed, the value of that presence in this turbulent arena was consistently demonstrated throughout the early and mid-1980s. Because especially close working relationships with a number of Marxist-Leninist countries in Africa have been established, the potential for increased SovietEast German, as well as Cuban, collaboration in the late 1980s was substantial. The result could be a greater degree of operational independence in the global arena than East Germany has enjoyed in the past. Finally, the economic intercourse between the Soviet Union and East Germany represents another important sphere of activity with long-run implications for the overall relationship. It should be emphasized that the magnitude of the economic links binding the two systems is impressive and clearly dwarfs anything achieved by the two German states in their commercial dealings with each other. East Germany and the Soviet Union are bound together in a vast network of bilateral and multilateral agreements to share technology and industrial production. A trade agreement between the two countries, signed in 1985, calls for trade turnover to increase 28 percent over the 1986-90 plan period (see Foreign Trade, ch. 3). However, higher energy costs represent a potential source of friction between the two partners. The Soviet Union has imposed 207

East Germany: A Country Study artificially low prices on imports from its Comecon partners and has demanded premium prices for the energy products that it exports to them (see Comecon, Appendix B). In light of the significant dependence on the Soviet Union for raw materials, such practices are undoubtedly troublesome for East German leaders. Joint East German-Soviet Relations with the West East Germany has its own specific foreign policy goals to advance in its effort to build a long-term relationship with the industrial West. As a direct result of its diplomatic breakthrough, beginning in the 1970s and continuing in the mid-1980s, East Germany also became an important partner of the Soviet Union in advancing both its own and Soviet national goals in Europe and North America. Two specific policy areas-European security and economic and technological cooperation-illuminate its role in helping to carry forward the goals of the Soviet-East German alliance system (see Appendix C). East Germany's forward position in the Warsaw Pact-as the westernmost point of the Soviet-East European alliance systemhas made the SED particularly sensitive to East-West efforts to stabilize the military balance in Europe. Thus by actively publicizing the Soviet-sponsored Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), it advanced its own specific goals. There is also a special point of convergence between the Soviet Union and East Germany on the subject of territorial inviolability, another issue dealt with by the CSCE. The two partners sought to get the West to agree on the permanent territorial division of Europe. As Honecker stated during an address delivered at the first CSCE meeting in Helsinki in July 30, 1975, "A socialist state in the heart of Europe at the boundary line between the most powerful alliances of our time, the German Democratic Republic accords high priority to security. Only if security and the sovereignty of states are guaranteed can there be fruitful, beneficial, and mutually advantageous cooperation. The lessons of history and the current requirements of European politics make respect for, and recognition of, the principle of the inviolability of frontiers the decisive factor. Security for the European states has always meant, first and foremost, security for their frontiers." Whereas the Soviet Union has attempted to use the ongoing conference as a forum to campaign for its goal of attaining the West's acquiescence to the postwar division of the continent, East Germany has used it to ensure multilateral support in order to blunt real or alleged efforts by West Germany to change the existing boundaries that separate the two countries from each other. 208

Peace rally outside the ruined Frauenkirche on February 13, 1983, the anniversary of the bombing of Dresden during World War I Courtesy Panorama DDR

In the early and mid-1980s, East Germany supported the Soviet Union in its efforts to stop the deployment of IRBMs in Europe. According to Honecker, "In an international situation perceptibly exaggerated by imperialism, especially by the most aggressive United States circles, the world once again hears from Moscow the voice of peace and reason and of the willingness and call for constructive steps on behalf of d6tente, the ending of the arms race and disarmament." In addition, East Berlin has resolutely followed Moscow's lead in condemning the United States Strategic Defense Initiative and West European participation in the project, as well as supporting the Soviet Union's efforts in strategic arms control. Its exposed military position has been both an advantage and a disadvantage to East Germany in its attempts to coordinate its policy on arms control with that of the Soviet Union. East Germany clearly has an argument in its favor when it maintains that military confrontation in Europe directly threatens its political order. As a result, there is some plausibility to its assertion that East German leaders fully support multilateral efforts to reduce such tension. However, the level of military preparednes within the country, which includes an extensive network of border patrols and fortifications that exists largely to prevent escapes to the West by its citizens, might in fact undermine the effectiveness of its campaign to work with the Soviet Union in reducing tensions (see Armed Forces; Paramilitary Forces, ch. 5). 209

East Germany: A Country Study Like the Soviet Union, East Germany is very eager to expand economic and technological links with the industrial West. Following the Soviet lead, East Germany increasingly supported proposals for technical and economic-financial cooperation between Comecon and the European Economic Community (EEC). Because East Germany enjoys access to the EEC, it is able to provide technology and hard currency transfers to Comecon. The 1970s witnessed a major expansion of trade between the Soviet Union, its East European allies, and the Western industrial countries. A partial reversal of this course has occurred in the 198 0s, as the Soviets have warned their East European allies about becoming economically dependent on the West. However, it is ciear that the Soviet Union and, to a lesser extent, East Germany will require assistance from the West if they are to modernize their economies through the introduction of high technology and other labor-intensive techniques. Ideological and Political Collaboration The interdependence between the Soviet Union and East Germany is based, first and foremost, on a shared interpretation of geopolitical power politics. Furthermore, the role of the Soviet Union in East German ideological and political development is a dominant one; the Soviet Union was responsible for the creation of East Germany and has given East Germany the opportunity to play an important role in world affairs. In return for this opportunity, East Germany promotes Soviet interests in Europe and the Third World. The East German and Soviet leaderships have developed a pattern of cooperation that in large measure works to the mutual advantage of both systems. In general terms, they share a common ideological and political orientation toward major issues that confront the Soviet-East European alliance system as a whole. From Eurocommunism to the conduct of proletarian internationalism in the developing areas of Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, the two partners take common positions and adapt their foreign policy strategies to the needs of the other. Not only has the Soviet Union been the decisive factor in helping East Germany become an internationally recognized power since the beginning of the 1970s, but it also has consistently supported the SED leadership in domestic conflicts. From this vantage point, the approximately 400,000 Soviet troops stationed in East Germany represent the final deterrent available in the event the regime's survival is threatened. As a result of the close ideological and political cooperation between the two countries, East Germany has taken the leading role in helping to establish the hegemony of Soviet-style Marxism in Eastern Europe. 210

Government and Politics East Germany demonstrated its value to the Soviet Union at the much-heralded meeting of the communist and worker parties of Europe, held in East Berlin on June 29-30, 1976, in the immediate aftermath of the Ninth Party Congress. East Germany's role at the meeting was pronounced. The SED, which had begun preparing the agenda for the meeting twenty months in advance, attempted to portray East Germany as a model of advanced socialism that could provide the West European comrades with important lessons in how to organize a complex industrial society along orthodox Marxist-Leninist lines. Until the mid-1980s, East Germany also had been a prominent proponent of closer coordination of the economies of East European Comecon members with that of the Soviet Union. In addition, the Soviet leaders may have used Honecker's visit to China in 1986 to signal their desire for Sino-Soviet rapprochement. In the mid-1980s, East Germany strongly supported the Soviet Union's efforts to have the United States Pershing II missiles removed from West German soil (at the same time, however, the Honecker regime attempted to insulate inter-German relations from the impact of this issue). Finally, in the words of one Western analyst, East Germany "is the prime developer of the political, social, and economic infrastructure of the Soviet Union's allies in the Third World." Ideological and political collaboration between East Germany and the Soviet Union is of special importance within Eastern Europe, where the SED was particularly active in advancing Soviet positions toward Czechoslovakia in 1968 and in Poland in 1980-81. In the Czechoslovak case, East Germany was probably the most influential East European voice urging the Soviet Union to put an end to the reform program of Alexander Dubek in August 1968. In 1980-81 the East Germans also urged the Soviet Union to take action against the Solidarity movement and the reform policies of the Polish United Workers Party. In each case, the East Germans tried to persuade the Soviet leadership that events in Czechoslovakia and Poland constituted a danger to the ideological cohesion of the Warsaw Pact alliance system. Of particular concern to the East German regime were the threats to its own stability posed by the reform movements in Czechoslovakia and Poland; consequently, it became a strong advocate of intervention. Relations with West Germany Shifts in superpower relations in the late 1960s helped bring about a rapprochement between the two German states in the 197 0s. Despite the decline in superpower d6tente, this rapprochement has continued in the 1980s. The normalization process took place on 211

East Germany: A Country Study
two levels. On one level, outside powers negotiated a treaty dealing with Berlin; on another, the two Germanies dealt with each other. The Western powers (the United States, France, and Britain) joined with the Soviet Union in negotiating the Four Power Agreement on Berlin (Berlin Agreement). Signed on September 3, 1971, the agreement served to normalize the political status of the divided city and provided for a specific number of guarantees safeguarding Western rights. As a result, the perennial crises over the future of West Berlin and its inhabitants have come to an end. Both German governments were kept informed over the course of the negotiations and during the intervening years have strongly backed the validity of the agreement. Normalized relations between the two German states have also concerned their respective political leaders. Two major agreements-the Transit Agreement and the Basic Treaty-were negotiated between Bonn and East Berlin in 1971-72, subsequently serving to expand and improve bilateral relations. The Transit Agreement carried through that portion of the Berlin Agreement applicable to the regulation of civilian passenger and goods transit between West Germany and West Berlin. Signed on December 17, 1971, the Transit Agreement between the two German states ensures that agreed-upon transportation links (road, rail, and water) will be maintained by the respective parties. In the past, East German authorities had occasionally disrupted traffic as a means of communicating dissatisfaction with one or another aspect of Bonn's activities in West Berlin. During the 1970s and 1980s (most recently in May 1986), the two countries have disagreed occasionally, but both sides have, for the most part, observed the inviolability of the Transit Agreement. The Basic Treaty provided the two German states with a longterm framework for the conduct of their diplomatic, economic, and political relations. Signed on December 21, 1972, the treaty covers a broad range of common problems, ranging from environmental issues, trade and commercial relations, rights of citizens while visiting the other country, and an agreement jointly to negotiate minor rectifications of the common border. The treaty enjoyed the full support of both governments in the 1970s, and major changes in their relationship subsequently occurred. From 1970 to 1985, trade between the two countries more than doubled. Travel between East Germany and West Germany has also grown substantially. From January to April 1984, approximately 897,000 West Germans visited East Germany and East Berlin, an 18.4 percent increase over the same period in 1983. Visits in the other direction also increased; in 1986 approximately 500,000 East Germans of working 212

Government and Politics age traveled to West Germany, reflecting a substantial change in East German policy on this matter. In 1986 the East German government allowed approximately 20,000 Germans to resettle in West Germany, which was larger than the number allowed to leave in any one year in the 1970s, but lower than in 1984, when over 30,000 East Germans left the country to settle in West Germany. The normalization of relations between the two Germanies manifests several inconsistencies. On the one hand, under Honecker East Germany has agreed to extensive economic and cultural contacts with West Germany. On the other hand, the Honecker regime has pursued a policy of Abgrenzung, designed to encourage a feeling of separate national identity on the part of the East German population (see The German Question Today: One Nation or Two, ch. 2). In the mid-1980s, with the revival of official interest in the German past and fewer references to Abgrenzung, it appeared that the regime had relaxed this policy. Another set of contradictory ideas is also applied to inter-German relations. On the one hand, as a price for closer relations, the Honecker regime has insisted that West Germany recognize East German citizenship and that East Germany's sovereignty be recognized through an exchange of ambassadors. On the other hand, as long as West Germany insists on acknowledging two German states in one German nation, an exchange of ambassadors is unlikely. Before Honecker came to power in 1971, the SED was formally committed to the goal of reunification of the two Germanies. Article 8 of the 1968 Constitution states that "The establishment and cultivation of normal relations and cooperation between the two German states on the basis of equality are national concerns of the GDR. The GDR and its citizens strive in addition to overcome the division of Germany imposed on the German nation by imperialism and support step-by-step rapprochement between the two German states until the time of their unification on the basis of democracy and socialism." The regime deleted that portion of Article 8 in the 1974 amendments to the Constitution. In the 1980s, in part as a function of alternate conflict and cooperation between the-Iwo states' superpower allies and in part as a function of the peculiar cuicerns of the two German states, relations between East Germany and West Germany fluctuated between conflict and cooperation. Upon coming to power in 1982, West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl emphasized Deutschlandpolitik (German policy), which had emerged under Kohl's predecessor, Helmut Schmidt, and was distinguished from the previous policy of Ostpolitik(eastern policy-see Glossary). Deutschlandpolitik involves the pursuit of three related policy aims: improving the lot of East 213

East Germany: A Country Study
Germans, alleviating the personal hardships on both sides of the border caused by the division of the German nation into two separate states, and fostering the unity of the German people. To pursue these policies requires the continuation and strengthening of dftente between the two Germanies and, in a larger sense, between the United States and the Soviet Union. In the 1980s, the Honecker regime has also evinced an interest in detente between the two Germanies for both economic and political reasons. The Honecker regime needs West German economic support to meet the needs of East German consumers, and West Germany is the path the East Germans take to hard currency markets. Indeed, as if to show that relations between the two German states were not going to suffer if new NATO missiles were deployed in Europe, in 1983 the West German government arranged a I billion D-mark banking credit to East Germany by a West German consortium. In return, the East Germans have removed many of the SM-70 automatic firing devices along the inter-German border. In September 1983, the minimum daily currency exchange requirement was eliminated for children between the ages of six and fourteen; in July 1984, this requirement was reduced from twenty-five to fifteen D-marks for pensioners. In the mid-1980s, the East Germans also demonstrated a willingness to undertake efforts to protect the environment in areas such as air pollution, acid rain, water pollution, and damage to forests that affect the two states. Political factors were also at work in the Honecker regime's attempt to continue rapprochement with West Germany in the 1980s. Honecker has sought full diplomatic recognition from West Germany and an acknowledgement that East Berlin alone represents the sovereign interests of the East German state. Continuation of dtente between the two Germanies held open the possibility that these two political objectives could be attained. Dtente between the two Germanies was dealt a blow in 1984, however, by Honecker's decision to postpone a visit to West Germany (see Relations with the Soviet Unior 4 this ch.). The American scholar A. James McAdams has argued that for his own reasons Honecker himself played an important role in this decision. Recognizing that the West German public demanded that its government maintain good inter-German relations, Honecker may have hoped that by postponing his visit indefinitely, he could win resolution of outstanding issues between the two governments on terms more favorable to East Germany. From 1985 to 1987, both Bonn and East Berlin continued to reiterate that Honecker's visit had only been postponed. However, in 1985 East Germany took up Moscow's 214

Government and Politics
propaganda line, warning of West German "revanchism" and criticizing West Germany's celebrations of the fortieth anniversary of Nazi Germany's defeat. After the Eleventh Party Congress in April 1986, the East Germans again joined the Soviet Union in attacking West German policies. In the mid-1980s, several problems continued to divide the two Germanies. To a large extent, relations between the two.German states are held hostage to relations between the United States and the Soviet Union. When relations between the two superpowers worsen, each superpower exerts pressure on its German ally to refrain from extending relations with the other German state. There are also other outstanding issues that have previously been touched upon: the nature of German citizenship, East Germany's demand for West German recognition of East German sovereignty, and the need for the resolution of border issues left ambiguous by the victorious Allies after World War II (see Boundaries, ch. 2). Finally, there are other problems that divide the two German states. East Germany seeks the abandonment of the monitoring station in Salzgitter used by West Germany to record human rights violations on the border. In turn, West Germany seeks a general improvement of conditions along the armed border and the Berlin Wall and the free movement of people and ideas between the two Germanies.

Policy Toward the Third World
Since the 19 70s, East Germany has pursued an active policy in the Third World, particularly in Africa. East Germany pursues a vigorous Third World policy both to advance its own specific interests and as part of its role as a Soviet client. In the 1970s and 1980s, East Germany promoted two foreign policy interests in the Third World. First, in the late 1960s and 1970s, East Germany, functioning as a divided state enjoying little international status as compared with West Germany, turned to the newly independent states of the Third World to gain recognition in return for economic and technical assistance. Comparative technological and economic backwardness vis-5.-vis West Germany was less important in the Third World arena than in the West; East Germany could still proffer much-needed assistance to these economically backward states. Second, East Berlin launched a propaganda campaign to identify West Germany as the heir to Germany's imperial past, while representing itself as a German state able to offer all the qualities usually associated with Germans, such as efficiency, without the taint of a colonial past. Indeed, these policies paid off in 1969 when Sudan recognized East Germany. 215

East Germany: A Country Study In the early 1970s, recognition by a number of Arab governments followed, no doubt impelled by East German support of the Arab cause in the June 1967 War between the Arab states and Israel. East Germany has also developed trading relationships with a number of Third World states. Algeria, for example, has become a leading supplier of oil to East Germany. The East German government hopes to tap coal reserves held by Mozambique, and in the 1980s East Germans were developing the infrastructure of the Moatize coal mining district in that country. In addition East Germany imports raw cotton, tropical fruits, coffee beans, and nuts from Africa. East Gcrmany also promotes Soviet interests in the Third World by extending military, economic, and medical aid to states allied with the Soviet Union in the Third World, as well as selected Third World liberation movements. East Germany has concluded treaties of friendship and cooperation with Angola, Mozambique, and Ethiopia. These agreements call for cooperation in the fields of health, economic, scientific, political, and educational affairs. East Germany has also signed specific agreements covering much of the same ground as the treaties of friendship and cooperation with other Soviet allies in the Third World. In the mid-1980s, East Germany had a significant military presence in the Third World. In 1981 the United States Department of Defense estimated that 2,225 East Germans were serving in the Middle East and Africa, specifically in Angola, Ethiopia, Guinea, Mozambique, Algeria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen). Apparently East German troops do no fighting; they act primarily in an advisory and training capacity. The Soviet Union trains military officers in these countries, and East Germany trains the other ranks. Third World military and security personnel have also traveled to East Germany for instruction. Such personnel include members of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), the South-West African People's Organization (SWAPO), the African National Congress (ANC), and the Zimbabwe African People's Union (ZAPU). East German military advisers in Angola, Mozambique, and Zambia also train guerrillas of SWAPO, the ANC, and ZAPU. In addition, East Germany gives food, medical, and educational assistance to these movements. One area of East German-Third World cooperation is police training. In the 1980s, hundreds of students from Angola, Mozambique, Ethiopia, and Guinea-Bissau took instruction in internal security methods for periods ranging from three months to three years. East Germany also has played an important role in the development of the economic infrastructure of selected Soviet allies in the 216

Government and Politics
Third World. East German education specialists have trained teachers, provided advice on the content of courses and books, and tendered instruction in educational administration in Benin, Mozambique, Angola, Congo, and Guinea-Bissau. In addition, East Germany has given assistance in the area of transportation; East German trucks operate in more than thirty countries, and in Angola and Mozambique the East Germans have set up centers to train indigenous personnel as mechanics and truck drivers. Finally, East German educational institutions that specialize in farm technology, health, construction, metalworking, finance, and industrial management have also trained personnel from countries such as Angola, Mozambique, and Guinea-Bissau. East Germany has encountered some frustrations in Africa. After Angola achieved its independence in 1975, East German technicians assisted in the operation of the port at Luanda. By 1981, however, Luanda had become very congested, and only a fraction of its equipment worked well. East Germany subsequently relinquished control over the port, which was turned over to a private Portuguese company. In general, in its effort to compete with West Germany throughout Africa, East Germany has been at a disadvantage because the West Germans have a considerably larger array of resources at their command, including substantial amounts of financial aid, which in the long run will probably be more important to the emerging societies than military and police expertise.

Policy Toward the Industrial West
Since the diplomatic wave of the early 1970s, East Germany has demonstrated a pronounced interest in expanding its economic and, where possible, political ties with the industrial societies of Western Europe and North America. This task has not been an easy one. West Germany continued to emphasize that it views East Germany as a special partner and accordingly reacted very negatively to efforts on behalf of the European allies to establish relations outside the existing framework that Bonn considered acceptable. East Germany's integration within Comecon and the Warsaw Pact also has limited the amount of diplomatic room available for building comprehensive ties with members of NATO. Furthermore, the country has not been able to expand trade with the West because of its existing delivery commitments to Comecon. Despite these restrictions, since the mid-1970s East Germany's economy has become increasingly tied to the market systems of Western Europe and Japan. Although the relative volume of its trade with those systems remained small, significant import and export growth has still been registered. 217

East Germany. A Country Study
In line with the emphasis on "dialogue" and a "coalition of reason" with the West, in the 1980s East Germany pursued contacts with Western governments. In 1984 an official East German-British cultural agreement was signed. In 1984 Austria and East Germany also signed a long-term economic accord and an agreement on the bilateral recognition of certain university degrees. In 1985 Italy and East Germany signed a long-term economic cooperation agreement outlining an expansion in bilateral trade and pledged a prompt exchange of cultural centers in their respective capitals. Japanese premier Yasuhiro Nakasone's 1987 visit to East Berlin probably presaged greater economic cooperation between the two countries.

East Germany has demonstrated a pronounced interest in expanding its relations with France. Long-term historical reasons, as well as practical considerations, motivate that interest. In addition, several members of the SED Politburo as well as government officials had spent some of their exile years during World War II in France. In 1967 a major diplomatic success was achieved by East Berlin when the "Friendship Group, France-GDR" was formed by a group of deputies in the French legislature. Diplomatic relations between the two countries were begun on February 9, 1973. In the mid-1980s, the two countries strengthened their ties. InJanuary 1984, cultural centers were opened in East Berlin and Paris, and in June 1985 French premier Laurent Fabius visited East Germany. France's share of East Germany's foreign trade has climbed from 0.6 percent in 1960 to 1.5 percent in 1985 (see Foreign Trade,

ch. 3). The United States
The absence of formal diplomatic relations between the United States and East Germany had represented a reluctance to accord political legitimacy to East Germany. When the two governments signed diplomatic protocols in Washington on September 4, 1974, the SED could rightly claim that an unpleasant era had come to an end. In a practical sense, East Germans were interested in establishing relations with the "main imperialist power," but the prospects for these relations always depended on the overall condition of East-West relations and on Washington's support for

The major obstacle facing expanded trade relations was the unwillingness of the United States Congress to grant most-favorednation treatment to imports from East Germany. Since 1974 a number of governmental emissaries from East Berlin have passed 218

Government and Politics through Washington in an effort to promote bilateral trade in the absence of such treatment. Despite their efforts, from 1980 to 1985, the United States declined from East Germany's twelfth to its twenty-eighth largest trading partner. In the mid-1980s, political relations between the United States and East Germany have warmed somewhat. In 1984 Honecker's efforts to isolate inter-German relations from the effects of the decline of superpower detente won the regime some credit in Washington. A number of diplomatic exchanges between the two countries have occurred, including a meeting between East German foreign minister Oskar Fischer and United States secretary of state George Shultz in October 1984.

The DDR Handbuch, compiled and published in West Germany under the direction of Hartmut Zimmermann, Horst Ulrich, and Michael Fehlauer, is an invaluable source of information on East Germany. Other important works include Henry Krisch's The German Democratic Republic, Hermann Weber's Geschichte der DDR, C. Bradley Scharf's Politics and Change in East Germany, Klaus von Beyme and Hartmut Zimmermann's Policymaking in the German Democratic Republic, and Martin McCauley's Power and Authority in East Germany. Notable works on East German foreign policy include Melvin Croan's East Germany: The Soviet Connection, A. James McAdams's East Germany and Ditente, Eric C. Frey's Division and Ditente, and articles by Ronald D. Asmus, B. V. Flow, Arthur M. Hanhardt, Jr., Walther Leisler Kiep, and WoodrowJ. Kuhns. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Chapter 5. National Security

Border watchtower

THE NATIONAL SECURITY problem for the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) is unique among all the countries of the world. From the establishment of the Soviet Zone of Occupation in the aftermath of Nazi Germany's capitulation in 1945 to the formation of the republic in 1949, its internal and external security was wholly in the hands of the Soviet occupation forces. Although the situation has changed significantly since 1949, the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany (GSFG) is the guarantor of East German security against external and, ultimately, internal threats. East Germany's substantial armed forces are overshadowed by the presence in their homeland of this powerful Soviet force. The GSFG is vastly superior to the East German forces in numbers and equipment, and a scenario in which the home forces might act independently is difficult to imagine. Internal security is in the hands of the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of State Security, but in this area also the Soviets would very likely intervene if they determined that local forces needed assistance. East Germany's principal external security problem during its first twenty-five years was hesitancy on the part of the rest of the world to perceive it as a legitimate, sovereign state. The principal internal threat was caused by traditional economic, cultural, familial, and historical ties with its larger and richer sister state, the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany). Political events of the 1970s, such as formal recognition by the United States, the signing of the Basic Treaty between the Germanies, and admission to the United Nations, indicated that the external problem had been largely resolved. The relationship with West Germany, however, has remained an issue, and new challenges emerged in the 1980s. East Germany sought to strengthen its position as the Soviets' chief ally, expand its role in the Third World, increase the militarization of all aspects of society, and cope with a rising crime rate-particularly among young people-and persistent signs of disaffection and dissent. How the East Germans successfully solved some problems and sought to deal with others is best understood by tracing the historical development of their national security.

The Soviet Zone of Occupation
On May 8, 1945, when Germany surrendered unconditionally to the Allied powers, the mold for its divided future already had 223

East Germany: A Country Study
been cast. The Yalta Conference of February of that year and the Potsdam Conference ofJuly-August left, at least in Western minds, the perception that ultimately post-World War II Germany would be a demilitarized and, to a degree, deindustrialized state of undetermined but shrunken borders. In dividing Germany into occupation zones, however, the Allies wittingly or unwittingly doomed such a state to failure from the start. After the common enemy was defeated, the traditional forces dividing the Soviet Union from the West reasserted themselves, and occupied Germany became the initial focus of conflict. Scholars still argue about who was truly responsible for the making of two Germanies. Opposing positions had emerged among the Allies while the war was being fought, and, in the postwar division of Germany into occupation zones, each occupying power intended to establish a local administration in its own image. The Soviet Union was no more likely to acquiesce to a Germany united as a Western-style democracy than the United States was to accept a united Germany under a communist dictatorship. Compromise by either side would have required a retreat from ideals and a degree of faith in the good intentions of the other side that simply did not exist. Although neither side may have recognized initially that the "temporary" division of Germany would become permanent, the pragmatic and suspicious Joseph Stalin probably accepted the possibility much more quickly than did the Western leaders. Stalin took the first step toward the institution of East German statehood when he began creating a centralized, armed military force in the Soviet zone in October 1945 under the guise of a police force.

The Soviet Military Administration
The day after the formal German surrender, the Soviet commander established the Soviet Military Administration in Germany (Sowjetische Militiradministration in Deutschland-SMAD) to govern the Soviet occupation zone. Headquartered in BerlinKarlshorst, the SMAD was the Soviet occupation authority until its functions were handed over to the Soviet Control Commission on October 7, 1949, the day on which the German Democratic Republic was founded. The Yalta and Potsdam agreements entered into by the Soviet Union, Britain, and the United States called for Germany's complete disarmament. Not only would no German ground, sea, or air forces capable of military action be created, but also no industrial capability to support such forces would be permitted. Police forces were to be local and decentralized. 224

National Security
Almost from the beginning of the occupation, the Communist Party of Germany, headed by Walter Ulbricht, began to assume civil authority. In the process of constructing a socialist system in the country, the party looked for political reliability as the principal qualification for leadership, even at the expense of competence. Initially, at least, reliability was measured primarily by a person's anti-Nazism. Not all persons selected were communist or of working-class background. None, however, were anticommunist. To ensure their reliability, the German Administration of the Interior, which later became the Ministry of the Interior, was established by the SMAD. The supervision of the police forcesreorganized on the basis of the five existing states of the Soviet zone-was a prime objective of the new German Administration of the Interior. At the same time that the police forces were being reorganized, the system of justice underwent a similar and much more stringent restructuring. All judges, prosecutors, and lawyers who had Nazi connections were summarily removed from office. Because the Nazis had dominated the legal system, this meant virtually a clean sweep. To fill the void, members of the legal profession who had retired before 1933 were pressed into temporary service. For a longer term solution, people with anti-Nazi and preferably working-class backgrounds were trained in intensive law courses, lasting six to nine months, run by the Soviet Army.

Foundation of the People's Police
By December 1945-within six months of the end of the wareach of the five states in the Soviet zone had a central police force, in clear violation of the Yalta and Potsdam agreements. In early January :946, the term Volkspolizei (People's Police) was applied publicly to the new police forces in East Germany, and in August of the same year these forces were placed under the central control of the newly created German Administration of the Interior, headed by Erich Reschke. Included within the structure of the People's Police was a special group called the Garrisoned People's Police (Kasernierte Volkspolizei-KVP). The group, first known as the Garrisoned Alert Units, was organized in 1948 but not officially recognized until 1952. These police, as the name indicates, lived in garrisons, or barracks, which usually were located in rural areas. The forces were organized and equipped as light infantry. The cadre comprised mostly former officers of Adolf Hitler's Wehrmacht who had undergone a conversion to communism while held as prisoners in the Soviet Union. Later the KVP was to be the major source of 225

East Germany." A Country Study
cadres for the armed forces of East Germany. The basic organization was similar to that of a Soviet battalion, and the uniforms were supplied by the Soviet Union. Initially the KVP was armed with captured German weapons, but gradually these were phased out in favor of Soviet weapons. Why the People's Police was created is more difficult to explain. It could be argued that creation of the force was one of the first steps in the establishment of a sovereign state. The preponderance of evidence, however, indicates that in 1945 Stalin had no intention of forming an independent East German state. A reasonable explanation for the establishment of the police force may be found in the Soviet model on which the German Administration of the Interior was patterned. Under the Soviet system, uniformed troops subordinate to the Ministry of the Interior were assigned to tactical units to prevent counterrevolutionary activities. It would seem logical from the Soviet standpoint that the German Administration of the Interior have similar security forces. Whatever the motivation, centralization of the police, beginning at the state level, was underway within a few months of the end of the war. According to Otto Opitz, who at that time was president of the police in Dresden and later became a senior official in the East German government, the SMAD approved the arming of community-level police forces on October 31, 1945, a date that East Germany also recognizes as the birth date of its armed forces. From its inception, the People's Police prospered rapidly. By November 1946, the force numbered 45,000 men; two years later, it had grown to 60,000. By 1950 the KVP component alone totaled 70,000. With this growth came better definition of functions and a more sophisticated organization. In November 1946, the SMAD directed the organization of the Border Police. The initial 3,000 recruits were organized and trained from People's Police resources, and by April 1948 the branch numbered 10,000, the total reaching 18,000 in 1950. In December 1946, the Railroad Police was established in the same manner. By 1948 the latter unit, redesignated the Transport Police, consisted of 7,400 men. By the end of 1948, the German Administration of the Interior had a large, well-organized security force under its command. The units were subordinate to the Main Administration of the Border Police and Alert Units, one of the primary agencies. Corresponding offices formed in each of the five states to coordinate police activities were removed from the jurisdiction of local authorities and directly subordinated to the central administration. While efforts were made to ensure the professional competence of security 226

National Security
forces by exploiting the experience of Wehrmacht veterans, of whom there was no shortage, the principal concern was political reliability. In its pursuit of reliability, the SMAD gave its first purge order in spring of 1949. This order directed the dismissal, from all branches of the police, of personnel who had been German police before 1945, had been prisoners of war in the West for extended periods, or had come to the Soviet-occupied zone of Germany as refugees from former German territories that had been placed under Polish or Soviet control. Those with close relatives in West Germany were also dismissed. In effect, anyone suspected of possible political unreliability was fired. At the same time, the first steps toward producing a reliable and professional cadre were taken by establishing the Main Administration of Training. The first training courses, run in 1949, were directed by such venerable communists as General Wilhelm Zaisser, the renowned "General Gomez" of the Spanish Civil War, and his deputy, the Soviet-trained general Heinz Hoffmann. Hoffmann later became minister of defense, commander of the National People's Army (Nationale VolksarmeeNVA), and a member of the Politburo of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands-SED), positions he continued to hold until his death in 1985. By 1949 the nascent East German state had a well-organized and centrally controlled national security force. Although it had no armed forces in name, the foundation for the services had been well laid, and the establishment of the German Democratic Republic justified creating such a force.

The Republic
On October 7, 1949, the formation of the German Democratic Republic as an independent socialist state superimposed on the Soviet Zone of Occupation in Germany was announced. There may be reason to doubt the degree of Soviet devotion to the survival of an independent East German state at the time; however, there is no doubt that Ulbricht intended to make his state work and survive. Although independence had been declared, the republic did not receive full sovereignty until 1955. It still had no peace treaties with former enemies, and ultimate authority still lay with the occupying Soviet forces.

Ministry of the Interior and the Soviet Control Commission
The new status required some changes in the structure of the governing apparatus of the country and in its relationship with its occupying power. The degree of direct Soviet involvement in dayto-day affairs diminished after independence was declared, and for


East Germany: A Country Study
this and other cosmetic reasons the SMAD became the Soviet Control Commission. The former German administrations that had been agencies of the SMAD became ministries of the new government. The new Ministry of the Interior evolved from the German Administration of the Interior and maintained its former directorates and functions. Although statehood brought many changes in the structure and functioning of the East German government, only one was of immediate and particular importance for national security. With the formation of the republic, all justification for maintaining political and administrative ties with the West was effectively abolished. Politically this meant that officials acceptable to the West no longer had to be tolerated and could be removed from positions of authority. It also justified measures designed to establish loyalty to an independent, socialist East German state among the population. Administratively the country and the government could be restructured to facilitate policy without concern for the reaction of Western powers. The new state sought to ensure its survival by centralizing authority and eliminating all sources of potential power other than those of the ruling party. These changes represented a clear-cut move toward a Soviet-style dictatorship. Political centralization was marked by another traditional Soviet device, the establishment of the National Front, the umbrella organization that facilitates control of all political parties and mass organizations. Gradually, the emphasis of the National Front shifted from antifascist to pro-Soviet. As a mark of this shift, 1950 saw what might be called "the second purge," a Soviet-style purge of the membership of the SED, in which all members turned in their party cards. After careful examination, cards were reissued to those deemed fit. The most common reason for refusing to reissue a card was the charge that the cardholder was a West German agent. In practice, the weight of the purge fell most heavily on Jews and those communists who had spent the war in the West. In the case of the Jews, the purge reflected events taking place in the Soviet Union. In the case of communists from the West, the purge strengthened Ulbricht's hand against other party factions. Along with attempting to improve national security through political and military means, East German leadership also worked to create a formal military and police structure. Although the Soviet Union and its East European allies may have been less enthusiastic about the creation of East Germany's armed forces than they were about the creation of the republic itself, the state needed the trappings of nationhood, including armed forces, if it was to be recognized as legitimate. 228

National Security Creation of the National Defense Forces under the Ministry of the Interior
In the initial stages of reorganization, the nonmilitary units of the People's Police, the Border Police, and the Transport Police were subordinated to the Main Administration of the People's Police within the Ministry of the Interior. The Alert Units of the KVP were assigned to the Main Administration of Training as the first step toward creation of the NVA and the Ministry of Defense. In the spring of 1950, the process of dividing the Alert Units into separate branches of the armed services was initiated. The first pilot training occurred at an aviation club at Lausitz, and shortly thereafter Special Section 2 of the KVP was created as the nucleus of the East German air force. In 1952 Special Section 2 was redesignated Main Administration for Air Police. A similar process established East Germany's navy. On June 15 1950, the existence of the Main Administration of Sea Police (Hauptverwaltung Seepolizei) was announced formally. Headquartered at Berlin-Niedersch6neweide, the Sea Police initially were responsible for protection of fisheries and for antismuggling activities. A school for sailors established at Kiihlungsborn, a school for petty officers at Parow, and an officer training school at Stralsundall on the Baltic Coast-provided the basis for the future navy. By 1952 the Sea Police had assumed the additional duties of minesweeping in coastal waters and, in cooperation with the Border Police, surveillance of the sea. Until shipyards-which began operation in 1952-could launch new ships, the Sea Police were limited to a few German World War II patrol boats and minesweepers turned over to them by the Soviets. The ground forces were structured on the light infantry battalions of the KVP and subordinated to the Main Administration of Garrisoned People's Police. Except for resubordination of the Border Police, the KVP changed the least of the three services. Organization and training for all services closely adhered to the Soviet model, and Soviet advisers were present at all levels down to battalion. Although much of the equipment and most of the weapons were initially of German World War II vintage, there was an increasingly rapid introduction of newer Soviet mat6riel. In a move to assert a separate identity, the East German leadership introduced unique uniforms, similar to the Soviet field uniforms, to differentiate the armed forces from the police forces.

Creation of the Ministry of State Security
It was during this same period, from 1950 to 1952, that the Ministry of State Security was established. Although set up on a


East Germany. A Country Study
much-reduced scale, the ministry was parallel to the Soviet security police in its general organization and functions. Its operations were more closely supervised and controlled by Soviet agents than those of any other branch of the East German government. Although the details of the ministry's work were shrouded in secrecy, in 1987 it was generally known that it ran East Germany's foreign intelligence network, especially the network in West Germany, in iddition to conducting its own clandestine security operations against foreigners and East German citizens. The ministry also had uniformed units in the form of the Emergency Police and the Feliks Dzierzynski Guard Regiment (see Paramilitary Forces, this ch.). As in the case of the armed forces, the Ministry of State Security had its genesis as part of the Ministry of the Interior. However, the Ministry of State Security became a separate ministry on February 8, 1950, before the establishment of the Ministry of Defense. By early 1953, the fundamental structure of the national security system, which followed the Soviet design, was in place and functioning. Although the system provided the external appearance of national sovereignty, its degree of autonomy was called into question in the uprising of 1953, when the disappointing performance of the People's Police in quelling the rebellion resulted in tightened Soviet control.

In the early 1950s, problems within the country were causing dissatisfaction among East German citizens. These problems included confusion within the ruling SED following the death of Stalin, economic pressures resulting from collectivization, payment of reparations, an increasingly disadvantageous comparison with West Germany, and resentment of Soviet presence and influence. Eventually these factors combined to trigger a spontaneous general uprising that started in East Berlin on June 17, 1953, and rapidly spread throughout much of the country. The rebellion was quickly suppressed by Soviet troops on June 17. This short but intense episode had far-reaching effects on the evolution of the national security system. The uprising taught the Soviets that the socialist revolution imposed from without had not been accepted by the German people. The absorption of this lesson brought fundamental changes to the status of the country. Recognizing that its economic policy of reparations was dangerous and that communism would not be a significant force in a unified neutral Germany, the Soviet Union shelved plans for German reunification and made a political and


National Security
economic commitment to the survival of East Germany as a political entity. For its part, the Ulbricht government also was forced to recognize that it lacked legitimacy in the eyes of its own people. In the short run, the most notable response was what could be called "the third purge" in the summer of 1953. This purge resulted in changes in the top ranks of the SED, including replacement of Zaisser, the minister of state security. During the remainder of the summer, 12,000 men of all ranks and grades were dismissed from the People's Police for "unreliability.'" The uprising, which raised doubts in the Soviet Union about the dependability of the young republic, also resulted in intensified supervision by the Soviet military, recall of MiG-I5s destined for the new air force, and curtailment of training and other programs. The Soviets continued to restrict military development in East Germany until the early 1960s, when the country appeared politically and socially stable enough to receive full support. Thus East Germany's national security organization was unable to pass its first serious test. Faced with an internal threat, its security organs failed to prevent or suppress the uprising. The shock of events, however, had the effect of forcing both the East German and the Soviet leadership to commit themselves to the difficult tasks necessary to make the state viable.

Establishment of the Ministry of Defense
On January 18, 1956, the People's Chamber (the national legislature) passed a bill creating the NVA and the Ministry of Defense. This act formally acknowledged the existence of East Germany's armed forces. The NVA incorporated the KVP, Sea Police, and Air Police into a single armed force having three branches: ground, naval, and air. The Ministry of Defense was headed by Colonel General (Generaloberst) Willi Stoph, who was also minister of the interior. In 1987 Stoph was chairman of the Council of Ministers and a member of the SED Politburo. General Hoffmann, who was listed as first deputy minister of defense, attended the Soviet General Staff Academy in the mid-1950s and replaced Stoph as defense minister in 1960. Hoffmann held the post until his death in 1985. Concurrent with the establishment of the NVA as a legal entity was a return to public manifestations of German military traditions, with the addition of socialist elements. The training regimen for recruits approximated that of the former Wehrmacht, as did drill and ceremonies. New uniforms, whose color and cut were far closer to those of German World War II forces than to Soviet models, were introduced. Only the helmet represented a radical 231

East Germany: A Country Study
departure from World War II, but here too the dc sign differed from the Soviet model. The creation of the NVA addressed both internal and external security problems. Internally the physical appearance of the NVA spoke to the population in terms of their traditional German heritage and differentiated the NVA from the Soviet Army. In theory at least, East German citizens could have pride in their own army. The swift creation of the NVA as a force of more than 120,000 officers and other ranks practicing Prussian-style drill was a dramatic gesture of nationalism that was impossible for the world to ignore. The creation of the Ministry of Defense and the NVA seemingly should have been a blow to the authority and prestige of the Ministry of the Interior. The bureaucratic impact of this action was mitigated by permitting Stoph to carry both portfolios for four years. In addition, police activities, both civil and secret, remained under the Ministry of the Interior, as did the Border Police. The Ministry of the Interior established its own Alert Units for the specific function of'internal security. The Alert Units were militarily structured, fully motorized units with modern weapons and equipment. Garrisoned and trained in battalion-size units, they were capable of carrying out police tasks and other security functions. They have been used in major disturbances or in civil disasters affecting public order and safety.

East Germany Joins the Warsaw Pact
In spite of external appearances, the creation of the NVA did not imply that the Soviet Union was surrendering its authority over East Germany. Soviet control was subtle but nonetheless pervasive: from its inception, the NVA was fully integrated into the Warsaw Pact (see Appendix C). East Germany assumed complete responsibility for its military security within its own borders. External security was ensured by membership in the Warsaw Pact. Presumably, East European concerns about a new German army were laid to rest by assurances that East German troops operating outside their own borders would be under joint command. The integration of East Germany into the Warsaw Pact lent the state a certain amount of internationally recognized legitimacy and made it difficult for the Soviet Union to negotiate the country out of existence in an agreement with the West. Ultimately, the Soviet Union recognized this fact by signing the bilateral Treaty on Mutual Assistance and Cooperation with East Germany on June 12, 1964. This treaty completed the process of integrating East Germany into the network that bound Eastern Europe to the Soviet Union. 232


Propagandaposter, which reads "Long Live the Indestructible Brotherhood-in-Arms of the Armed Forces of the Warsaw Pact!" Courtesy V. Jeffrey Gedmin

Crisis Control
The beginning of the 19 6 0s marked a new stage in the history of East Germany. Although it certainly had not solved all its security problems, the country had made significant progress. Control over society had been stabilized, and party authority was well established. The basic governmental structures necessary to guarantee the internal and external security of the state had been created and were functioning at a surprisingly high level of efficiency. In grudging acceptance of these realities, the Soviet Union had given the republic increasing authority over its own internal affairs, and the neighboring East European states had accepted it as a full member of the Warsaw Pact. There were, however, serious national security problems to be faced. The most serious was the mass exodus of East German citizens to West Germany from East Berlin to West Berlin and through the east-west border. The figures are indeed monumental. In 1959 about 144,000 persons fled; in 1960 the figure rose to 199,000; and in the first seven months of 1961, about 207,000 left the country. The damage caused by this exodus was compounded by the fact that the defectors represented a high proportion of the young, better educated, and most productive members of society.


East Germany: A Country Study
An equally important though less pressing problem concerned international recognition. Although the East German government received formal recognition within the communist world, the noncommunist world either ignored it or refused the regime recognition on the basis of its being a puppet government. National security efforts during the 1960s were devoted to resolving these problems. During the early months of 1961, the government actively sought a means of halting the emigration of its population to the West. By the early summer of 1961, Ulbricht apparently had persuaded the Soviets that an immediate solution was necessary and that the only way to stop the exodus was to use force. This presented a delicate problem for the Soviet Union because the four-power status of Berlin specified free travel between zones and specifically forbade the presence of German troops in Berlin. Although it is not known who made the actual decision to erect the Berlin Wall, it is generally accepted that overall operations were directed by Marshal Ivan Konev, commander in chief of the GSFG. Apparently Konev appointed Major General Martin Blek of the NVA as the operational commander. During the spring and early summer, the East German regime procured and stockpiled building materials for the erection of the Berlin Wall. Although this extensive activity was widely known, few outside the small circle of Soviet and East German planners believed that East Germany would be sealed off. It may have been that neither the Soviets nor the East Germans were certain of the reaction that they would have to face from the East or the West. For this reason, 8,000 Working-Class Combat Group's personnel from East Berlin, Saxony, and Thuringia were employed as the so-called first line of the operation. The WorkingClass Combat Groups, a workers' militia, were present in a police capacity to ensure that the troops and the local population remained passive during the construction of the Wall. Approximately 32,000 NVA combat and engineer troops were used in building the Wall; they constituted the second line. Once their efforts were completed, the Border Police assumed the functions of manning and improving the barrier. The third line consisted of the Soviet Army, which was present to discourage interference by the West and presumably to assist the NVA in the event of largescale riots. The operation started at 2:00 a.m. on August 13, 1961. Construction of the Berlin Wall proved three important facts. First, the NVA could plan, organize, and rapidly execute a large-scale operation in complete secrecy. Second, the government could and would take tough and brutal measures to ensure its own survival. 234

National Security
Third, the operation resolved questions concerning the reliability of People's Police units that had originated during the June 17, 1953, uprising. Differentiation between the Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of the Interior was still in progress in the 1960s. Another issue in this process was the subordination of the Border Police. On September 15, 1961, by order of the National Defense Council, the entire Border Police was transferred to the NVA and redesignated the Border Troops of the NVA. Various explanations for this shift have been offered by different authorities. The official reason stressed improvement in the level of training through closer relationship with the NVA and provision for reinforcement of the Border Troops with other NVA assets. The actual reason probably had more to do with standardization within the Warsaw Pact since similar reorganizations occurred in roughly the same time period in all the non-Soviet Warsaw Pact armies. By the end of the 196 0s, the security forces had probably achieved the maximum strength possible under existing conditions. Military service was not extremely popular with the postwar generation, and any move toward conscription during the 1950s would have only added to the flood of emigration. After the building of the Berlin Wall, however, this restriction vanished. On September 20, 1961, little more than a month after the Wall was built, the People's Chamber passed the Act on the Defense of the German Democratic Republic, which, among other things, prescribed personal obligations for national service. Although the act did not legislate conscription, it set the base for the National Service Act of January 24, 1962, which required military service for all males between the ages of eighteen and twenty-six and made all males up to the age of fifty liable for military service. In a declared "state of defense," males were made liable for service until sixty years of age, and women between the ages of eighteen and fifty could be drafted for medical or supply service in the NVA. As the 1960s progressed, Soviet confidence in the new republic and its armed forces reached ever higher levels. As the decade drew to a close, the position of the country within the socialist camp was far more certain than it had been at the beginning of the 1960s. All was not well, however, in the rest of the socialist camp. Liberalizing forces were appearing, their most apparent manifestation occurring in the Prague Spring in neighboring Czechoslovakia. Given East Germany's own uncertain history, liberalization was then, as it continued to be, an unsettling thought for the East German leadership. 235

East Germany: A Country Study
For this reason, Ulbricht was willing to support a Soviet initiative to re-establish a "reliable" government in Czechoslovakia. When the Warsaw Pact states declared the situation in Czechoslovakia "absolutely unacceptable," East Germany was in full agreement and was ready to follow the Soviet lead. On the night of August 20, 1968, when the forces of five Warsaw Pact nations invaded and occupied the country, NVA troops were among the participants. Although NVA participation was minor (limited to two divisions that were kept out of populated areas) and its forces were withdrawn after only five days, the invasion of Czechoslovakia marks a watershed in the history of East Germany. For the first time since World War II, German troops marched upon foreign soil. East Germany's participation in the invasion of Czechoslovakia showed the world that the NVA could-and would-use its newly created military might to function effectively outside its borders. In addition to the other political repercussions in the world, it was now clear that East Germany could no longer be ignored. The invasion also had an internal impact. East Germans, who were able to watch footage of the invasion on West German television, were well informed about the events in Czechoslovakia. Within seven days after the invasion, over 5,000 East Berliners went to the Czechoslovak embassy to sign protests against the occupation. Throughout the country, there were numerous antiregime and antiSoviet incidents. In Erfurt, People's Police Alert Units went on patrol to forestall planned protest demonstrations, and in Leipzig the Soviet consulate had to be protected. In Schwerin police used water cannons to disperse demonstrators. East German reaction to the invasion clearly showed that the government had not captured the hearts and minds of a significant portion of its citizens. The use of massive repressive measures demonstrated that the government was not in complete control. In contras to the situations in 1953 and 1961, however, East German security forces quickly and effectively managed the 1968 crisis without Soviet participation or support.

The National Security System and the Citizen
Having successfully met challenges at home and abroad, East Germany entered the decade of the 1970s with a stronger external security image than it had had previously and with a fully active state security apparatus in operation. Internal security had been tightened, and the Berlin Wall had stemmed the emigration problem. The regime was perceptibly closer to international recognition. Matters involving the organization of the national security system and political and social integration still had to be addressed, however. 236

National Security
Civil Defense As a member of the Warsaw Pact, East Germany is obliged to ensure that its security organization corresponds to the norms accepted for the other member states. In 1961 the Soviet Union had created a comprehensive civil defense system that brought all functions-military, police, economic, and medical-into a single organized body. By 1969 the other non-Soviet Warsaw Pact states had followed suit, and on September 16, 1970, East Germany came into compliance when the People's Chamber passed a law creating a comprehensive civil defense system. This law was replaced by the Civil Defense Law of 1978, later modified by decree in 1981. These laws regulated mobilization, set forth the obligations of the population in the event of war, and determined the role of the citizenry in peacetime civil defense work. Since 1981, for example, all East German males between the ages of sixteen and sixtyfive and all females between the ages of eighteen and sixty have been required to participate in civil defense training exercises that frequently simulate nuclear warfare and involve entire sections of a city. Under the new law, the minister of defense, through the director of civil defense, was made responsible for national civil defense. Until 1978 civil defense had been the responsibility of the minister of the interior; the change was made throughout the Warsaw Pact in the 1970s in accordance with Soviet doctrine, which began to define civil defense as an element of warfare. The Central Civil Defense Staff had been created to formulate plans, conduct dayto-day business, and coordinate activities should an emergency arise. For local operations, regional, urban, and district staffs were established. People's Police officers and others specially trained at national civil defense schools in the Soviet Union occupied many staff positions. The law also provided for the formation of civil defense committees at local levels, down to the level of cooperatives; directors of plants, offices, and schools would be responsible for civil defense affairs in their organizations. Civil defense training was mandatory for all citizens beginning at the age of sixteen and extending through the age of sixty for women and sixty-five for men. Training included formal schooling at the district level and tournaments with competition in individual and team civil defense skills. Also included in the law was a provision for construction of civil defense shelters, giving emphasis to the safety of the leaders of the SED and the government. Possibly because of shortages of building materials, shelters for the general public were few and of poor quality. 237

East Germany. A Country Study
In 1987 the civil defense cadre numbered about 3,000, and several hundred thousand civilians were subject to mobilization as needed (see Paramilitary Forces, this ch.). Public safety organizations, including police, fire, Red Cross, and communications, could be mobilized under the direction of the local Civil Defense Staff. Volunteer formations known since 1982 as Civil Defense Alert Units could also be activated in an emergency. In addition, certain branches of the economy, such as construction organizations and the public health system, created their own civil defense sectors, having specific responsibilities in their own areas of competence. Another aspect of the civil defense structure was its mass nature. Civil defense not only served its direct purpose of protecting the state, the economy, and the public from the effects of war and natural catastrophe, but it also represented a socializing instrument, or a means of providing mass participation in state affairs without sharing political authority. Civil defense, as one of the methods used to educate the population to think and act as citizens of East Germany, was an important feature of the system of national security.

Socialist Military Education
Civil defense was but one vital element of East Germany's comprehensive system of socialist military education. As a result of extensive measures aimed at the political and ideological education and military training of all citizens fit for military service, more East Germans engaged in military activity in the 1980s than did citizens of any other Warsaw Pact country. Of every 10,000 Germans, 433 were members of the armed forces or of paramilitary units in 1983, in comparison with 210 Czechoslovaks, 185 Soviets and 115 Poles. Military education had been stressed in East Germany since the founding of the republic, and in 1978 it was made a formal component of the school curriculum as an independent educational subject for the ninth and tenth grades of the republic's schools. In March 1982, the new Military Service Law expanded the oblig tions of East German citizens yet again with five major new provisions. Preparation for military service was required by law. All state organs, factories, organizations, schools, and universities were legally obligated to provide such preparation. Every citizen was obliged to contribute toward defense. The term of military service for reservists was lengthened. The state was given the right to draft women between the ages of eighteen and fifty for general military service; previously they could be conscripted only into noncombat roles. Service in construction troops was declared equivalent to 238

National Security
fulfillment of the military service obligation, and certain conditions for this service were set forth. These measures were in part a response to declining birthrates and an increasing need for conscripts who had enough basic training behind them to spend their active duty learning to master more sophisticated technology. They also could be viewed as a response to growing indications of popular resistance. Signs of resistance included an increasing number of young men who chose to serve in construction troops or refused to serve at all, protests from East Germany's Lutheran Church against the militarization of the educational system and organized military youth activities, and waning interest among young men in an NVA career. The Military Service Law of 1982 gave a more precise and binding legal basis to premilitary training, which had been stressed in East Germany since 1951. In the early 1980s, even before implementation of the new law began in 1983, as many as eight of every ten draftees had had premilitary training. Educational and career opportunities often were tied directly to participation in premilitary activities and to military service. Socialist military education began in kindergarten, where the children played games with a military orientation and learned songs and poems about soldiers. Older children, as members of the Young Pioneers, took part in military games and the annual Snowflake Maneuver directed by NVA officers. The school system, reinforced by the family, was to lay the basis for forming-as early as possible-what the SED called the image of the enemy and instilling hatred for all foes of socialism, with emphasis on the soldiers of the West German Bundeswehr. The premilitary education curriculum stressed civil defense and general military subjects. Instruction consisted of lessons on such themes as national defense, the nature of a possible war, the duties of soldiers and territorial defense forces, and the weapons and equipment of the socialist armies. Classroom work was supplemented by a self-contained course of approximately fifty hours taught during the last two weeks of the ninth grade. At the end of the tenth grade, the NVA conducted a closing exercise of several days. Premilitary Training by Mass Organizations A major component of socialist military education was the mandatory premilitary basic training provided for all young men between sixteen and nineteen in training units of the Society for Sport and Technology (Gesellschaft ffir Sport und Technik-GST) at expanded secondary schools, vocational schools, or other vocational training institutions. According to law, the Free German Youth (Freie Deutsche jugend-FDJ) was jointly responsible with 239

An accent on the military in a Pioneer camp near Erfurt Courtesy V Jeffrey Gedmin

the GST for premilitary training, particularly for its political aspects. Of the two mass youth organizations, it was the FDJ that had the earlier influence on young East Germans. In 1946 the FDJ began to provide, as part of its program, military training for young men and women between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five. It had the right to maintain organizations in schools, factories, offices, and the armed services. It also ran the Ernst ThdImann Pioneer Organization for children between the ages of six and fourteen. The most important aspects of FDJ premilitary training were discipline, physical training, and political reliability. Discipline was instilled through the group's semimilitary organization, which emphasized order and obedience to authority. Physical training was reinforced through an extensive, well-organized system of calisthenics, physical conditioning programs, and athletic competitions. Participation in the FDJ's annual Hans Beimler Contest, a premilitary competition, was required for boys and girls in grades eight through ten. Political reliability was taught through participation in ceremonies and was incorporated in lectures and other events in the FDJ program. The leadership of the NVA was particularly pleased with the physical training program and stated that the physical quality of recruits coming from the FDJ was decidedly above that for 240

National Security
nonmembers. The most important role for the FDJ, however, was in the area of political reliability. Even after members entered the service, the FDJ organizations there oversaw their off-duty time and ensured that they maintained proper socialist values. Itwas the FDJ that was selected to sponsor campaigns in the mid-1980s to encourage young conscripts to add another eighteen months or more to their term of active military service. In the early 1980s, about 80 percent of the young service personnel were FDJ members. For those young men or women who wished to become officers in the NVA, the People's Police, and probably the Ministry of State Security as well, an endorsement by their local FDJ organization was an unofficial but nonetheless real requirement. FDJ brigades also had a role to play in the Third World. Young East Germans, regarded as industrious, skilled, and well behaved, were much sought after. In the early 1980s, there were approximately fifteen FDJ brigades in nine African countries. These youth brigades did construction and repair work and trained truck drivers and mechanics. The GST, founded in 1952 and directly subordinate to the minister of defense, had as its primary tasks the development of public military readiness and the premilitary preparation of young people between fourteen and twenty-five for service in the armed forces. The organization soon enjoyed a certain popularity because it offered numerous opportunities to engage in expensive hobbies and activities that as a rule were not easily accessible to East German teenagers. In 1982, with the passage of the new Military Service Law, premilitary training became compulsory; hence the GST was an essential instrument in East Germany's system of socialist military education and national defense. As of April 1983, the society had approximately 480,000 members and almost 100,000 instructors. Many of the latter were NVA reservists. The top officials of the GST were NVA officers and generals. Vice Admiral Giinther Kutzschebauch, a graduate of the Naval Academy of the Soviet Armed Forces in Leningrad, has headed the GST since 1982. Like the FDJ, the GST was responsible for physical training and for inculcating political reliability and military discipline. The GST differed from the FDJ, however, in that it concentrated on teaching military and military-related skills and knowledge. In addition to compulsory basic training, the premilitary training program included specialized preparation for specific NVA career fields. Participation in career training was voluntary except for young men between sixteen and nineteen who intended to be career servicemen. Among the offerings were vehicle driving, mechanics, radio and telegraphy, sailing, diving, parachute jumping, gliding and 241

East Germany: A Country Study
flying, and marksmanship. Successful completion of a requirement earned a badge that later could be worn on the NVA uniform. The GST also pursued its goals through classes on socialism and SED objectives, patriotic activities such as visits to war memorials, organization of national and international military and athletic competitions, and sponsorship of annual training camps, which were considered the high point of general premilitary training. Young people in vocational training attended camp during the first year of their apprenticeship, while university students went at the beginning of the second phase of their studies. All university students, even those who already had served in the armed forces, were subject to military student training. The program for young women attending the camp focused on civil defense, and members of the Red Cross received special training. After camp training-at the start of the second year of apprenticeship or the third phase of university study- additional advanced training began.

Conscientious Objection to Military Service
The work of the FDJ, GST, families, and schools was complemented by vocational counseling centers, parent associations, and military district commands. The entire apparatus of socialist military education, in turn, was part of a sophisticated, comprehensive structure that tied together police, traditional military, and uniformed as well as plainclothes security organs in a network of professional services that blanketed the entire society. The resulting system was so pervasive that it touched every citizen and every activity in the country. As the regime stepped up its efforts in the late 1970s and the 198 0s to militarize society still further, popular resistance increased as well, despite tightened controls. One source reported that the number of young men who refused to do any military service at all had risen from 8 in 1980 to about 150 in 1985. Traditionally such refusal resulted in a prison sentence of twenty-four months, greater than the length of the military service obligation. The number of young East Germans choosing to serve in the NVA's construction units-the only route open to those who wished to do unarmed service-also was on the rise, from about 700 a year to approximately 1,000, according to one source. Since the autumn of 1964, there have existed NVA engineer companies that do not bear arms, in accordance with an order of the National Defense Council. On this basis, in well-founded exceptional cases, those subject to induction who for religious or similar reasons refuse to bear arms are permitted to serve as construction soldiers. The Military Service Law of 1982 did not permit refusal 242

National Security to serve for reasons of conscience. The new law no longer used the term "alternative service" (Wehrersatzdienst). Beginning in the 1980s, construction soldiers had to take a vow to increase defense readiness rather than the oath of allegiance required of other soldiers. They wore gray uniforms with the design of a spade on the shoulder patch, performed military construction and rear-guard services as well as some tasks in the industrial and social-service sectors, were subject to military law and disciplinary regulations, were commanded by NVA officers and noncommissioned officers (NCOs), and received engineer training and political education. In 1983, of the 230,000 soldiers in the NVA, 0.6 percent-about 1,400 persons-were allowed to serve in the construction units. According to one report, however, the number of persons electing such service was so high that draft officials claimed the plan was overfulfilled, and in 1983 young East Germans unwilling to bear arms had to join the regular troops. In February 1983, in Schwerin, Dresden, and East Berlin, five young men were sentenced to eighteen months in prison because they tried to exercise their right to join the construction units. Service in the construction troops did, however, have certain consequences. In the 1970s, East German leaders acknowledged that former construction soldiers were at a disadvantage when they rejoined the civilian sphere. They were not allowed to enter certain professions or to pursue a university education. In 1984, however, Honecker and Defense Minister Hoffmann asserted that construction soldiers no longer suffered such discrimination; like others who had completed their military service, they were given preference in the university admission process. Since 1978 the East Germany's Lutheran Church has sought a liberalization of the system for conscientious objectors, who have only one option: service as construction soldiers. Reaction to the 1982 Military Service Law was strong, and the church advocated a program of social service for peace, that is, alternative service in hospitals, old-age homes, and the like. Church leaders also opposed the introduction of compulsory military education in schools, the practice of teaching hatred of the foes of socialism, and the SED's emphasis on the image of the enemy. The church became the focus of a growing independent peace movement, which expressed its goals in the suggestion that swords once again be turned into plowshares. After passage of the 1982 law, the East German Roman Catholic Church grew more active as well. In a pastoral letter in January 1983, Catholic bishops condemned the militarization of life in East Germany (see Religion and Religious Organization, ch. 2). 243

East Germany: A Country Study The National People's Army and the Third World
In support of its external security function, the NVA has pursued an increasingly assertive role since the 1950s, promoting both East German and Soviet interests in the Third World. Having gained the Soviets' trust and having assumed the role of the Soviet Union's leading surrogate in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, by 1986 the NVA had come to play a large part in Moscow's Third World strategy. In Africa, where East Germany has been active since the late 1950s, early efforts were modest, motivated partly by a desire for international recognition and a quest for a stable supply of raw materials. The diplomatic isolation imposed by West Germany's Halistein Doctrine-which precluded diplomatic relations between West Germany and any state that had such relations with East Germany-ended in 1972, and the coming of d6tente altered East Germany's international standing. In 1973 the East German regime renewed interest in military aid to Africa, and in the same year East German military advisers were seen in Brazzaville, Congo, for the first time. As involvement continued to diversify and increase, other motivations became pre-eminent. New intentions included a desire to demonstrate the permanence and prestige of the East German republic; a determination to compete in the international arena with West Germany, which the East Germans depicted as the sole heir to German imperialism and colonialism; and an eagerness to prove its value as the front runner for the Soviet Union in endorsing liberation movements and acting on the Leninist tenet that Moscow's road to Europe leads through Africa. In providing assistance in military, security, scientific, technical, and economic spheres, East Germany's goals, both national and international, remained consonant with those of the Soviet Union and the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Estimates of the numbers of East German military advisers in Africa varied widely, as did reports on their location. According to the West German Foreign Office, in the mid-1980s East German military advisers in Africa-members of the NVA as well as the Ministry of State Security-numbered between 2,000 and 4,000, the majority being in Ethiopia, Angola, and Mozambique. Their influence reached far deeper than the numbers suggest, since the East Germans concentrated on establishing internal security organizations and intelligence services, training cadres and guerrilla commanders, and organizing national military systems. In 1982 East Germany acknowledged that it delivered arms and military technology, educated cadres, established plants for defense 244

National Security industries, granted patents for production of defense mat(riel, and
helped organize and train troops in East Germany as well as in their home countries. According to some sources, East Germany was training all categories of African officers except staff officers, who received their training in the Soviet Union. Angolan paratroopers, for example, reportedly participated with an East German paratrooper battalion in joint exercises on Rfigen Island in the Baltic Sea. In the 1980s, East Germany's primary clients in Africa were Ethiopia, Angola, and Mozambique. Others receiving East German military aid included Algeria, Cape Verde, Guinea, GuineaBissau, Nigeria, Tanzania, Tunisia, Zaire, and Zambia, as well as the South-West African People's Organization (SWAPO) and the African National Congress (ANC). East German military exports to Africa generally averaged about US$60 million in the 19 80s. This reflected the underdeveloped state of the republic's armaments industry as well as competition within the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon), but the low figure may also have resulted from diversion of arms shipments through a third country, Czechoslovakia being the most likely conduit. Some assistance not labeled as military, but as scientilic-technical, had clear potential for military application: port expansion and modernization; construction of hospitals and training of physicians; and development of transportation and telecommunications systems. Many of the client countries in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen), had East German-trained civil and secret police, border troops, or prison guards. The elite Feliks Dzierzynski Guard Regiment of the Ministry of State Security trained security personnel in Angola, Mozambique, Ethiopia, and South Yemen, for example. In addition to training, East Germany also provided "solidarity aid" to a number of African states and Vietnam. In the mid-1980s, disaster relief was provided to Ethiopia during a severe famine. East German civil and military air assets participated with the Soviets in delivering such items as foodstuffs, blankets and clothing, tents, and vitamins and medicines. Shipments of "solidarity goods" were coordinated with other East European states because of Comecon's arrangements for a division of labor (see Appendix B). In the 1980s, an aspect of East Germany's involvement in the Third World-the republic's increasing identification with world terrorism-posed a significant danger to the West and to United States allies in the Middle East. East Germans allegedly trained terrorists in camps in Libya and South Yemen, and the NVA operated a school fbr terrorists in Pankow, a northern part of East Berlin. 245

East Germany: A Country Study
The school had ties with a Palestinian terrorist organization and perhaps with the Soviet Committee of State Security as well. In response to changes in the political scene, East Germany became more active outside Africa as well. In the 1980s, East Germany gave support to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), South Yemen, Iraq, Vietnam, India, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Aflghanistan, and other countries or movements in less-developed countries. For example, it flew wounded Afghan soldiers to East Berlin and supplied medical and other equipment to the Afghan army, while El Salvador and Nicaragua received various forms of military assistance. Since the mid-1970s, East Germany has been involved indirectly in virtually every large-scale conflict in Africa. In many casesAngola, Ethiopia, and Mozambique, for instance-East German support was crucial. Despite the financial expense of support for Africa and other Third World countries, East Germany in the mid-1980s was strengthening its existing ties and seeking new ones as part of a policy expressly based on Marxist-Leninist doctrine and proletarian internationalism.

Armed Forces
In 1987 East Germany maintained a regular military establishment with a strength of 175,300, about 1 percent of' the population. Conscripts totaled about 95,000, or approximately 54 percent of the armed forces. The ground, air/air defense, and naval forces were included in the NVA, which had grown out of the police units created under the Soviet occupation after World War II. The close association thus established with the Soviet Army continued to exist in 1987 and was reflected in the missions and roles of the NVA. Even the military oath of allegiance taken by all NVA service personnel refers to the alliance with the Soviet Army (see fig. 11). Since the mid-1970s, East Germany has had three military districts-I, 11, and V-defined as higher military-administrative groupings of formations, units, and military facilities in a certain area (see fig. 12). Until the mid-1970s, the People's Navy had constituted Military District IV, while the Air Forc/Air Def.ense Force hadtformed Military District II: these two districts as such were abolished in the mid-1970s. In 1987 the air/air defense and naval forces were under the orders of their respective commands. The military districts were also separate from the fifteen districts of the civil administration and from the air def'nse districts, which were part of the Warsaw Pact air (et'nse system. Within the NVA's 246

National Security


I swear at adl times loyally to serve the German Democratic P!rpublic, my fatherand,and to protect it against any enemy when so orderedby the workers' and peasants'government. f swear as a soldier of the NationalPeople'sArmy to be ready at afl times, side by side with the Soviet Army and the armies of the socialist countries alliedwith us, to defend socialism against allenemies and to stake my fife for the achievement of victory. I swear to be an honorable, brave, disciplined,and vigilant soldier, to render unconditionalobedience to my military superiors, to carry out orders with complete determination, and always strictly to guardmilitary and state secrets. I swear conscientiously to acquire military knowledge, to observe military regulations, and always and everywhere to guard the honor of our republic and of its NaitionalPeoples Army. Should I ever violate this, my solemn military oath, may I suffer the stern penalties of the laws of our republic and the contempt of the working people.

Figure 11. National People's Army Oath of Allegiance, 1987

system of military justice, each military district constituted ajudicial district for a military high court. In 1987 Military District I, headquartered at Strausberg-a small town near Brandenburg, thirty-five kilometers west of Berlinwas essentially the capital district. The district included the Ministry of Defense, the Border Troops, and Civil Defense. Military District III and Military District V-the two ground force districtshave been subordinate to the Ground Forces Command in Potsdam since 1972. The head of each district was supported by a staff and an advisory military council. Military District 11, embracing the southern half of the country, was headquartered in Leipzig; 247

East Germany: A Country Study


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National Security Law contained several measures designed to increase the pool of potential service personnel, including a provision for mandatory premilitary training for all young men and women. As of 1987, women were not subject to compulsory military service, but they were permitted to volunteer and were doing so in increasing numbers. For the most part, women served as temporary NCOs, career NCOs, or warrant officers in the NVA and the Border Troops. Typically, they worked in the administrative service as secretaries, in stationary communications centers as telephone and teletype operators, and in the medical service as nurses. More and more women displayed interest in becoming officers, and in September 1985 the Franz Mehring Officer School of the Air Force/Air Defense Force for the first time admitted women for education as political officers or technicians. Women were not assigned to line units in mid-1987, although official publications contained discussions of the possibility of a combat role for women. During mobilization and in a national defense emergency, East German women between the ages of eighteen and fifty (through December 31 of the year in which they turned fifty) might be included in the general draft. Since appropriate peacetime preparation was a prerequisite, they might at any time receive an order to report for induction for training purposes. One source estimated that in the mid-1980s women accounted for as much as one-third of the country's active civil defense forces. Socialist military education stressed women's important contribution to national defense, and in January 1983 the magazine Sport und Technik, an official GST publication, appealed to young women to volunteer for service in the NVA, since the mission of the armed forces-the prevention of war-is not men's concern exclusively. For the fiscal year ending on December 31, 1986, the sum of 14.1 billion GDR marks-5.8 percent of the total budget-was earmarked for national defense and security (for value of the GDR mark-see Glossary). The figures published may have little indicative value, however, since East Germany does not fully disclose defense expenditures. Many Western experts agree that economic problems apparently have resulted in a trend toward negative real growth in defense spending. Numerous economy measures have been instituted in the armed forces, particularly in regard to consumption of petroleum, oil, and lubricants.

Missions and Roles
Official literature stresses that the reliable protector of the East German state is the Soviet Union and that the NVA contributes to the Soviet effort. Article 6 of the Constitution states that the 249

East Germany: A Country Study
"German Democratic Republic is forever and irrevocably allied with the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics." In referring to the NVA, Article 7 states that "the National People's Army and other national defense bodies protect the socialist achievements of the people against all external attacks. In the interest of the preservation of the peace and security of the socialist state, the National People's Army cultivates close comradeship-in-arms with the armies of the Soviet Union and other socialist states." Thus the NVA is constitutionally bound to the armed forces of another state. The mission of the NVA is defined in terms of reinforcing the Warsaw Pact. Specifically, the ground forces of the NVA are trained and organized to fight separately as a national army or as part of a Soviet front (army group). The NVA's People's Navy, even in peacetime, operates in close coordination with the Soviet Baltic Fleet and the Polish navy. In wartime it probably would be absorbed completely into the Soviet Baltic Fleet. The primary role of the NVA's air force is air defense, and in this function the force is completely integrated into the Soviet air defense network. To a limited extent, it could supply close air support to NVA ground and naval forces. Historically, the NVA has played a limited role in internal security in comparison with other security services. Naval units in their routine coastal patrol activities have cooperated closely with units of Border Troops and the Ministry of the Interior. In 1987 the Border Troops, which were separated from the NVA in 1974 although they remained subordinate to the Ministry of Defense, had a major role in preventing illegal emigration, but primary responsibility for internal security lay with forces of the Ministry of State Security and the Ministry of the Interior. The NVA, however, because it is subject to direct party control through the Central Committee of the SED, could and would be used if the situation demanded.

Ministry of Defense
The NVA is administered through the Ministry of Defense, one of the principal branches of the national government. In December 1985, General (Armeegeneral) Heinz Kessler became minister of defense with headquarters in Strausberg, just outside Berlin. Kessler replaced Hoffmann, who held the post from 1960 until his death in 1985. Kessler was assisted by a colloquium of deputy ministers who were also chiefs of certain key administrations within the ministry. In 1987 the deputy ministers and their assignments were as follows: Lieutenant General (Generalleutnant) Klaus-Dieter Baumgai ten, 250

National Security
chief of the Border Troops; Admiral Wilhelm Ehm, chief of the People's Navy; Colonel General (Generaloberst) Joachim Goldbach, chief of Technology and Weaponry; Lieutenant General Horst Brinner, chief of the Main Political Administration (Kessler's former post); Colonel General Wolfgang Reinhold, chief of the Air Force/Air Defense Force; Colonel General Horst Stechbarth, chief of the ground forces; Colonel General Fritz Streletz, chief of the Main Staff and secretary of the National Defense Council; Lieutenant General Fritz Peter, chief of Civil Defense; and Lieutenant General Manfred Graetz, chief of Rear Services. The organization of the East German Ministry of Defense, which closely follows the pattern of the Soviet Ministry of Defense, comprises several administrations and departments, among which there appears to be a certain amount of overlapping authority. In the mid-1980s, its complement of about 4,200 personnel had a militaryto-civilian ratio of approximately three to one, in contrast to comparable Western ministries or departments that generally have a much higher proportion of civilian employees. Approximately 100 Soviet officers also were assigned to the East German ministry. The chiefs of the major administrations and commands concurrently served as deputies to the defense minister (see fig. 13).

Ground Forces
The ground forces in 1987 made up 68 percent of the NVA, having a total strength of 120,000, of whom 60 percent were draftees. Ground forces included two tank divisions, four motorized rifle regiments, two surface-to-surface missile brigades, two artillery regiments and one antiaircraft artillery regiment, eight air defense regiments, one airborne battalion, two antitank battalions, and several support units. Because East Germany produced primarily military suppliessuch as computers, clothing, military vehicles, and communications equipment- rather than arms, major items of weaponry and equipment were obtained from the Soviet Union. Of the equipment used by the ground forces, only some wheeled vehicles were of East German design and manufacture. Some small arms and ammunition were also of local manufacture but were licensed copies of Soviet designs. The NVA had purchased 170 RM-70 122mm multiple rocket launchers and a number of FUG-70 scout cars from Czechoslovakia, but most of its weapons and equipment were of Soviet design and manufacture. In 1985 the tank inventory included an estimated 1,500 T-54s, T-55s, and T-72s assigned to units and approximately 1,600 more armored vehicles, including T-34s, in storage. Reconnaissance units were equipped with 1,000 BRDM-l 251

East Germany.- A Country Study

Main Staff of the NVA* OperDeons intelligence Organization Mobilization Topography Cryptography Ool

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and 54 self-poelled M otorad inftr (15mm gun howitzers aswn rs vais othe, Inds of h TR-0s, M-69Ps and BTR-a52s and 200 BTR-70s (armored personnel carriers) and MT-LBs (multipurpose towing and transport vehicles). The artillery inventory included the following guns: 400 D-44s and selfpropelled SD-44s (85mm); M-1931s and M-1937s (122mm); and 72 M-46s (130mm). There were also 108 M-1937 gun howitzers and 54 self-propelled M-191 and D-20 (152rm) gun howitzers, as well as various other kinds of howitzers: D-30s, M-1938s (M-30s), and self-propelled M-1974s (122ram). Other artillery assets were 250 mortars (120mm); 24 FROG-7 and 18 SCUD-B tactical missile launchers; and multiple rocket launchers, which included 108 BM-21s, Czechoslovak RM-70s (122mm), and BM-24s (240mm) (see fig. 14). 252


National People's Army artillerymen during afiring exercise

The NVA's antitank inventory consisted of 120 T-12 guns (100mm) and various quantities of AT-3 SAGGER (including selfpropelled BRDM-2s) and AT-4 SPIGOT antitank guided weapons. In terms of air defense assets, the East German ground forces had ninety-six self-propelled ZSU-23-4 guns, as well as SA-4, SA-6, and SA-9 antiaircraft missiles. People's Navy The People's Navy (Volksmarine) of the NVA had a total strength in 1987 of approximately 16,300, of whom 50 percent were conscripts. The navy comprised three flotillas, the Coastal Border Brigade, and several supporting units; the command was in Rostock-Gehlsdorf. The naval forces were viewed as the forward contingent of the Warsaw Pact's Combined Baltic Fleet. The c.,mmander of the Soviet Baltic Fleet was also the head of this alliance of the three Warsaw Pact fleets in the Baltic. The Soviet Navy-unlike the Soviet ground and air forces in the GSFG-had no bases with personnel of its own in East Germany. The People's Navy, which in 1987 had surface and naval aviation forces but no submarine component, performed intelligence and patrol missions in the western Baltic, antisubmarine warfare operations, minesweeping and minelaying, and amphibious landing operations. The Coastal Border Brigade patrolled the east-west 253

East Germany: A Country Study






























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Fgure 14. Representative Motorized Rifle and Tank Divisions, Early 1980s 254

National Security border into the Baltic to secure the sea border against "those GDR citizens who turn their backs on the republic." The Border Troops maintained their own boat companies on the ninety-three kilometers of the Elbe between East Germany and West Germany and in the waterways around West Berlin. These units, although linked through their work to the People's Navy, were subordinated to the Border Troops rather than to the NVA. The boat crews wore naval uniforms and held naval ranks, but bands on their caps and sleeves identified them as Border Troops. In early 1987, East Germany's naval forces were structured as follows: the 1st Flotilla, headquartered in Peenemfinde; the 4th Flotilla, based in Rostock-Warnemiinde; the 6th Flotilla, headquartered in Dranske on Rijgen Island; the Coastal Border Brigade in Rostock, and one communications regiment, stationed on Rugen Island. Also subordinated to the People's Navy Command were a naval fighter regiment in Laage; a naval helicopter squadron in Parow; a combat swimmer company in Kiihlungsborn; a naval engineer battalion in Stralsund; the Naval Hydrographic Service in Rostock; the Karl Liebknecht Officer School in Stralsund; the Walter Steffens Fleet School in Stralsund; the Naval Manning Division, with offices in Rostock, Stralsund, and Wolgast; a testing facility at Wolgast; the Central Military Hospital in Stralsund; at least one coastal rocket regiment, probably in Tarnewitz; the Central Supply Depot in Waren; and coastal artillery detachments. The People's Navy had bases at Peenemfinde, Warnemfinde, Rostock, Stralsund, Tarnewitz, and Dranske. The People's Navy and the Coastal Border Brigade also made use of berths at Darsser Ort, Greifswald, Ueckermunde, Wisborn, Kuihlungsborn, and Sassnitz. According to one source, patrol vessels from the Soviet EFaltic Fleet were frequently present at Sassnitz. The construction of a large rail ferry port at Mukran on Rfigen Island, linking East Germany with Klaipeda in the Soviet Union, might indicate an intention to make Sassnitz into a base as well. The approximately 131 surface combatants and 48 auxiliary craft operated by the People's Navy in 1987 were designed and built at shipyards in East Germany or in the Soviet Union. The largest were three Soviet Koni-class frigates-Rostock, Berlin, and Hallewhich were commissioned in 1978, 1979, and 1986, respectively. There were also sixteen Parchim-class corvettes; fifteen OSA-I (three of which were in reserve for training and were to be replaced) and two Tarantul-I-class fast attack craft (missile); and fifteen Shershen-class and twenty-five Libelle-class fast attack craft (torpedo). The mine force included twenty-five Kondor-Il-class coastal minesweepers. The amphibious capability was structured 255

East Germany. A Country Study
around twelve Frosch-I-class amphibious vehicle landing ships. The Coastal Border Brigade had ten Bremse guard boats and eighteen Kondor-I-class submarine chasers. In addition to the combatants, the navy operated two salvage and rescue ships; six underway replenishment ships; a training ship, the Wilhelm Pieck; thirty-nine other auxiliaries (including intelligence-collection ships, hydrographic survey ships, and cargo ships); and a large number of service craft. The naval aviation branch was equipped with twenty Mi-8 and Mi-14/HAZE helicopters configured for antisubmarine warfare, coastal observation, and reconnaissance, and ten jet fighterbombers. The Coastal Border Brigade, headquartered at Rostock, accounted for approximately 2,750 of the 16,300 members of East Germany's naval forces. The brigade was organized into eight boat groups to patrol coastal waters and twelve battalions to patrol beaches and shores. The Coastal Border Brigade operated its own school. Amphibious forces were subordinated to the 1st Flotilla, based at Peenemiinde. Although the NVA did not have a naval infantry as such in 1987, the Ernst Moritz Arndt Motorized Rifle Regiment 29, stationed at Prora on Rugen Island, and the Wilhelm Florin Motorized Rifle Regiment 28, at Rostock, were trained as amphibious landing units. Both were equipped with the BTR-60PB, an eight-wheeled amphibious armored personnel carrier; both participated in amphibious training in cooperation with landing ships of the People's Navy. If the NVA were to create a force of naval infantry, these motorized rifle regiments undoubtedly would form its nucleus. In 1987 the principal shipyard supporting the People's Navy was the Peenewerft shipyard in Wolgast. Peenewerft was apparently the primary source of amphibious ships. The People's Navy was generally rated by Western observers as professionally competent and fully capable of securing the country's Baltic seacoast. For more ambitious operations, however, the navy would be employed as part of the Combined Baltic Fleet.

Air Force/Air Defense Force
The air force of the NVA, known as the Air Force/Air Defense Force (LuftstreitkrMte/Luftverteidigung), maintained headquarters at Strausberg. The main mission of the air force was to prevent penetration of East German airspace by hostile missiles or aircraft. To perform this mission, both aircraft and antiaircraft units were made organic to the air force. The antiaircraft assets assigned to the ground forces were to defend NVA ground formations from 256

Launching missile from East German naval vessel

attack by hostile aircraft and were not part of the national air defense. The operations of the NVA's air force were closely linked with those of the GSFG, and the air defense component was fully integrated into the Soviet and Warsaw Pact air defense system. Both interceptor aircraft and missile units were fundamental parts of the Duty System, in which Soviet, Polish, Czechoslovak, and East German air defenses were maintained in a continuous high state of alert. In 1987, the Air Force numbered approximately 39,000 personnel, of whom 38 percent were conscripts. The latter figure, which was substantially lower than the 60 percent for the ground forces and the 50 percent for the People's Navy, reflected the higher proportion of officers and NCOs in the air force. Officer candidates were trained at the Franz Mehring Officer School in Kamenz. Much of the pilot training was conducted in Bautzen, not far from Kamenz, and in Rothenburg. Many East Germans received flight training as teenagers, through participation in the GST, and were licensed pilots when they entered military service. Essential in the training of air force officers was a good knowledge of Russian, the language of the Warsaw Pact's Duty System of air defense. Except for a few Czechoslovak trainers, the approximately 380 aircraft, 70 armed helicopters, and other equipment of the air force were of Soviet design and manufacture. In the mid-1980s, there 257

East Germany.- A Country Study
were two regiments of lighter aircraft, probably composed of six squadrons-three with thirty-live MiG-17s and two with twentyfour MiG-23Fs. There were some Su-22s as well. The NVA's single reconnaissance squadron had eighteen MiG-21 s. The transport regiment was made up of three squadrons equipped with eighteen An-26s, fifteen Tu-134s, An-2s, An-14s, An-26Bs, and some six L-410UVPs. This regiment provided the airlift for the airborne battalions of the ground forces. The three helicopter regiments included nine squadrons: three attack squadrons with thirty Mi-24s; three assault/transport squadrons with thirty-six armed Mi-8s; and three transport squadrons with some forty-five Mi-8s. The Air Defense Command, with 26,000 troops-almost 67 percent of the manpower total for the Air Force/Air Defense Forcewas organized in two air defense districts. The 6 air regiments included 6 squadrons with 100 MiG-21Fs, MiG-2IMFs, MiG-21PFs, and MiG-21Us, and 12 squadrons with 200 MiG-23s. The seven surface-to-air missile (SAM) regiments had SA-2 and SA-3 missiles at some thirty sites. The missile inventory included 205 strategic SAMs and 270 tactical SAMs. Two radar regiments were available as well. Other assets of the Air Force/Air Defense Force included an inventory of some sixty Yak-ll, L-39, Zlin 226, MiG-15UTI, MiG-2 IU, and other small aircraft controlled by the chief of flight training. The available liaison aircraft included Zlin Z-43s. In addition, the NVA had AA-2/ATOLL air-to-air missiles and AT-3/SAGGER guided weapons for antitank warfare. The air force could provide limited ground attack support for the ground forces and defense of the country's airspace. Acquisition of heavily armed assault helicopters suggested an increased emphasis on developing the capability for close air support. The air transport capability was adequate for the logistic and airlift needs of the NVA. Its helicopter component provided a degree of air mobility for NVA ground forces. The air arm ot the NVA was, however, basically a tactical air force that was totally reliant upon the Soviet Union for strategic or long-range operations.

Border Troops
In 1987 the Border Troops numbered approximately 50,000, about 50 percent of whom were conscripts. Although subordinated to the Ministry of Defense, they were no longer part of the NVA. Formerly known as the NVA Border Command, (and before that the Border Police), they were separated from the NVA in 1974 and renamed Border Troops (see Fig. 15). This step may have been 258

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East Germany: A Country Study
taken to keep the units from being affected by international agreements on force reductions. According to East German law, service in the Border Troops was the equivalent of NVA service in terms of fulfilling the military obligation, as was service in the Garrisoned Units of the Ministry of the Interior (the People's Police Alert Units and portions of the Transport Police) and the Ministry of Security (the Feliks Dzierzynski Guard Regiment in East Berlin and the units of that regiment stationed in the district capitals). The Border Troops' oath of allegiance did not differ materially from that of the NVA. The troops were composed of conscripts, term soldiers, and career soldiers. Women served as term and career soldiers on the staffs and in the rear services of the Border Troops. Care was taken to ensure that members of the Border Troops had no family ties with the West. Young men eager to climb the ladder fast in East German civilian life frequently volunteered for term service in these troops, and the SED expected that many of its members who were earmarked for cadre assignments would serve there. These troops, with a central command in Patz, near K6nigswusterhausen, were organized into three border commands and two independent regiments. Border Command North, headquartered in Stendal, patrolled the east-west border from its northernmost point at Liibecker Bucht to Nordhausen. Border Command South, with its seat in Erfurt, guarded the border from Nordhausen to the Czechoslovak border. Border Command Center, in Patz and East Berlin, was responsible for the regiments and units whose troops operated in the area around Berlin. The Polish and Czechoslovak borders were each patrolled by an independent border regiment, with headquarters in Frankfurt am Oder and Pirna, respectively. The seacoast was guarded by the Coastal Border Brigade of the People's Navy. Border Command North was reinforced on the Elbe by a boat section independent of the People's Navy, based at D6mitz, and was assisted by the Water Police. Other than this augmentation, the northern and southern commands had identical organizations. Each had 6 regiments and 2 training regiments, with 1,200 to 1,400 men in each regiment. Border Command Center operated in the area around Berlin. In addition to six border regiments and two training regiments, it included the special Border Crossing-Point Regiment that controlled the access points to West Berlin. Border regiments each comprised three battalions of four companies. The regiments also had a staff company (headquarters) and transport, rear services, engineer, signal, and artillery companies. Overall, there were approximately 150 border companies, each with 260

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an authorized strength of 100. Weapons and equipment corresponded to those found in a motorized rifle battalion; T-54s and T-55s were available for antitank operations. Along the border with West Germany, there were three helicopter squadrons, equipped with Mi-2, Mi-8, and Mi-24 helicopters. Flight personnel were trained by the NVA's Air Force/Air Defense Force, which probably supplied the technical personnel as well. In addition, the GSFG maintained its own helicopter forces for border security. The Border Crossing-Point Regiment was made up of eight companies; the other regiments of Border Command Center were each reinforced with a boat company to patrol the waterways in and around Berlin. The Border Troops were quite successful in halting illegal emigration. Improvements in facilities and procedures were made when a new system known as company security was introduced in 1981. Only 160 persons were known to have succeeded in crossing the border illegally in 1985, as compared with 192 in 1984, 228 in 1983, and 207,000 in 1961, before the Berlin Wall was built. Special awards for preventing escapes, as well as special pay and rations, were provided to members of the Border Troops. The Border Troops operated their own training establishment for officers, NCOs, and recruits. Beginning in 1983, however, warrant officers (FAihnriche) were trained at the NVA's Erich Habersath Military Technical School at Prora, on Rugen Island. Members of the Border Troops were closely supervised and intensely indoctrinated, largely because of their ease of access to West German territory. East German military defections between 1961 and 1985 totaled 2,500, and 90 percent of these were members of the Border Troops, primarily enlisted men. Reorganization, stricter border zone security, and stringent training brought a steady decline in the defection rate. In 1985 there were only ten military defectors overall. Guarding the border was not the only mission of the Border Troops. According to a Politburo resolution of 1985, the Border Troops, as well as the NVA, reliably defended the socialist order and guaranteed the inviolability of the borders of the workers' and peasants' state and its national security. In case of an attack from the West, these troops would be East Germany's first line of defense. Authorized to operate and fight independently until the approach of the NVA, they were trained to seize and hold commanding heights, important lines of communication, military facilities, and vital civilian installations on enemy-presumably West Germanterritory, or to destroy major objectives that they were not equipped to defend. 261

East Germany. A Country Study Uniforms, Decorations, and Insignia With the exception of the People's Navy, whose dark-blue uniforms follow the style of the majority of navies around the world, all NVA services and the Border Troops wear the same basic uniform adopted in 1956 when the NVA was officially established. Several improvements have been made since that time, but the style and cut remain fundamentally the same. There are various kinds of uniforms, worn according to the work or social situation and differing in material for summer or winter wear. Most uniformsservice, semidress, and parade-are stone gray, a brownish-gray color that is conspicuously different from the gray-green of the People's Police uniform. Several basic categories of uniforms-field (Felddienstuniform), service (Dienstuniform), semidress (Ausgangsuniform), parade (Paradeuniform), and fatigue (Arbeitsuniform)- are worn. The better quality and texture of the cloth in officers' uniforms distinguish them from the uniforms of enlisted personnel. The field and service uniforms are normal attire in garrison and for most other duty activities. In summer, the field uniform consists of a jacket and trousers with a dark-brown raindrop camouflage pattern on a stone-gray background. The uniform is worn with a field cap, service cap, or steel helmet; high black boots; and a leather belt with vertical web shoulder suspenders. In winter, a quilted stone-gray padded suit without a camouflage pattern is worn over the service uniform. The winter uniform also includes a fur pile cap or a steel helmet, boots, knitted gray gloves, belt, and suspenders. The summer service uniform for officers features a bloused jacket, worn without a shirt, trousers, and a visored service cap. In winter, a service jacket with four large patch pockets with button-down tabs, worn with a black belt, the service cap, breeches, shirt, tie, belt, and high boots are provided for officers and NCOs. For winter, there also is a long, heavy, belted overcoat. The semidress uniform, except in details, is the same for all ranks and is worn on off-duty or off-post occasions. It includes the service cap, jacket, long trousers, and black low-quarter shoes. The single-breasted jacket is worn without a belt, with a silver-gray shirt and a dark-gray tie. Officers may wear the jacket with a white shirt. During periods of warm summer weather, either the shirt and tie or the jacket may be omitted. The parade uniform for officers is the semidress jacket worn with all authorized awards and decorations, breeches and riding boots, steel helmet, white shirt, dark-gray necktie, and a ceremonial dagger on the left side, fastened to a silver-gray parade belt. Officers in 262

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guards of honor carry sabers. In winter, overcoat and gloves are worn. Seasonal considerations and weather govern the kind of fatigue, or work, uniform worn. Generally, reconditioned items of service clothing-field, semidress, and winter padded uniforms-are dyed black and issued for all kinds of fatigue and maintenance details. Coveralls are also used by the lower ranks, especially armor and air force personnel. Officers in technical branches supervising fatigue details wear a laboratory-style smock. Other kinds of NVA uniforms exist as well. High-ranking officers occasionally wear white uniforms, and staff officers are supplied with staff service uniforms. Women service members have their own uniforms-jackets, skirts or slacks, blouses, caps, boots or pumps, and other appropriate items in accordance with the season and the occasion. Paratroopers, motorcyclists, tank personnel, and others have special items of apparel. The uniform of the Border Troops is distinguished from that of the NVA ground force and Air Force/Air Defense Force by a green armband with large silver letters identifying the wearer's affiliation. East German armed forces personnel display rank insignia on shoulder boards or shoulder loops on service, semidress, and parade uniforms, and subdued sleeve insignia midway between the shoulder and elbow on the left sleeve of the field uniform, coveralls, or other special uniforms. General officer rank is denoted by five-pointed silver stars mounted on a gold and silver braided shoulder cord set on a bright red base. All other officers and NCOs wear a fourpointed star (see fig. 16; fig. 17). The regime has some seventy decorations for persons or groups it wishes to recognize, and it bestows them liberally. Some, such as battle decorations, are specifically set aside for armed forces personnel, many may be awarded to soldiers and civilians alike, and others, although ordinarily civilian awards, can on occasion be earned by those on military duty. The latter group includes decorations for achievement in the arts, literature, pro-luction, and work methods. They may be awarded to service personnel or specific units that have participated in civil production projects or assisted during harvesting, The Order of Karl Marx, Order of Merit, Star of People's Friendship, Banner of Labor, Order of Scharnhorst, Order for Service to the Fatherland, and the National Prize are among the more important awards. Some, including the Order of Merit and the Star of People's Friendship, are awarded in three classes. A few are accompanied by substantial monetary premiums. Unlike the Bundeswehr of West Germany, the NVA does not permit military personnel to wear Wehrmacht awards and decorations. 263

East Germany: A Country Study












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East Germany: A Country Study Military Traditions and Ceremonies
The fostering of military traditions occupies a large place in the political and ideological instruction of East Germans before, during, and after military service. In the NVA, this instruction is said to be based on resolutions of the SED Central Committee and the government, as well as the research findings of Marxist-Leninist historiography. Numerous forms of recalling military, socialist, and revolutionary traditions are observed: the presentation of banners; ceremonies centered on the taking of the oath of allegiance; the awarding of honorifics to units, garrisons, schools, and ships; the creation of unit museums; the maintenance of rolls of honor; meetings with veterans; visits to historic sites and the East German Army Museum; and anniversary celebrations. Major elements in these observances, which are continually revised and augmented, can be categorized as follows: commemoration of glorious feats of arms in the service of progress; recognition of exemplary soldiers, political figures, socialist groups, and NVA units; celebration of East German-Soviet and socialist brotherhood-in-arms; and identification of military traditions that are to be rejected because of their undesirable historic associations. Certain historic events such as the Great Peasant War of 1525, the 1923 communist uprising in Hamburg, and the building of the Berlin Wall fall into the first category. Among the exemplary personalities are Rosa Luxemburg, August Bebel, Gotz von Berlichingen, General Carl von Clausewitz, Richard Sorge, Friedrich Engels, and General Gerhard von Scharnhorst. In the modern army, NVA soldiers and entire units can be declared worthy of emulation as well. Marching songs, parades, garrison reveille, honor guards at the Memorial to the Victims of Fascism and Militarism and elsewhere, and celebrations commemorating such events as anniversaries, the completion of a certain amount of flight time, or victories in socialist competition also 3erve as reminders of socialist tradition and instruments of political and social integration. Each NVA unit has its own banner, which is used in taking the oath of allegiance. It is held so sacred that the unit itself is not permitted to repair a damaged banner. The banner must be defended at all costs; if it is lost or falls into enemy hands, the unit is dissolved, and the commander and those soldiers deemed directly culpable are called to account. Some traditions of recent vintage have a public relations function. For example, upon leaving active duty every member of the NVA or Border Troops is given two reservist handkerchiefs. One, 266

Change of the guard at the Neue Wache, East Berlin Courtesy Paul Rood

a fancy handkerchief, is for the reservist himself; the other, made of lace, is intended for his wife, girlfriend, or mother. Other traditions intentionally recall historic antecedents: the uniforms, except for the fur cap of the winter uniform, resemble in cut those of the Wehrmacht. In fact, the steel helmet was designed at the end of World War II by the Wehrmacht's Army Ordnance Office. Conditions of Service The NVA may be a people's army, but in early 1987 it was not a classless army. It had a precise classification by rank group, and a superior-subordinate or senior-junior relationship that would be familiar to those experienced with the distribution of authority in Western armies. Basically, service personnel were broken down into soldiers, NCOs, warrant officers, officers, and generals. Service in the NVA is defined as conscript service, term service, or career service. Conscripts are draftee privates who serve eighteen months. Term privates and NCOs usually enlist for three years but may choose to serve for up to ten years. Term enlisted personnel can be promoted to the rank of sergeant or its equivalent. Term officers serve at the pleasure of the Ministry of Defense and can be promoted to the grade of captain or its equivalent. Career NCOs serve at least ten years or until they reach the age of retirement. 267

East Germany: A Country Study
Warrant officers serve for at least fifteen years; career officers, for a minimum of twenty-five years. The pay scale in the NVA is according to rank. Special bonuses are given for outstanding performance, and additional pay is given for certain functions and for those serving in the Border Troops or airspace security work. There was a 25 percent increase in military pay in 1982. Military pay is exempt from income taxes or social security requirements. Additionally, upon completion of service, career service personnel are guaranteed a position in the civilian sector with pay that at least equals that received in the NVA. The average daily ration prescribes 4,200 calories per day. Border Troops receive a supplemental ration, as do flight personnel and personnel at sea. In all, there are ten different ration scales. As in the Soviet Army, mess personnel procure much of the ration from the local economy, and units often supplement the ration by cultivating gardens. Most basic training is conducted within the unit to which the soldier is assigned. The Border Troops and certain naval personnel are taught in centralized special training units. An extensive network of educational institutions exists for improving the technical specialties of NCOs and officers, and with only a few exceptions, those of senior rank are sent to schools in the Soviet Union. The training program in the NVA focuses upon two goals: political reliability and technical competence. The remainder of the training effort emphasizes developing technical skills to employ, maintain, or repair equipment. Particularly within the Air Force, Air Defense Force, and the People's Navy, officers must become proficient in the Russian language. The NVA training program not only serves the traditional function of improving the performance of units and individuals hut also is an important tool for disciplining the people and teaching citizenship. In this way, the NVA fulfills its role as a "school of socialism." The NVA takes seriously its responsibilities for regulating and disciplining military personnel. In 1982, following passage of the new Military Service Law, these responsibilities were increased. The new law expressly stated that disciplined behavior was the duty of all military personnel. As before, the commander was held responsible for maintaining discipline among his subordinates. Commanding officers from the level of division commander up were given the right to reduce a subordinate in rank, and the already extensive system of reward and punishment was enlarged further. New disciplinary units were instituted, where those being punished typically spend one to three months. This extreme penalty was 268

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intended for enlisted personnel and NCOs who did not respond to less stringent disciplinary measures.

Reserves and Mobilization
Under law the Council of State is empowered to declare a republicwide "state of defense" in the event of an international crisis or an internal or external threat to security. Under such a declaration, the National Defense Council can declare either partial or total mobilization. The principal purpose of the mobilization is apparently to reinforce the rear services of the NVA rather than to create additional combat units. Of particular importance to mobilization are the transport, postal, and communications systems. During mobilization the government is able to transfer these functions rapidly from support of the civilian economy to support of military operations. Essentially mobilization is best understood in terms of militarizing the entire country. The National Defense Council, which includes the senior leadership of the SED and the government, assumes military command over all administrative, economic, and social apparatuses of the country. Under the defense law, "every able-bodied citizen, in the event of a state of defense, can be required to serve in or beyond his place of residence." It should be noted that this requirement is beyond the statutory obligation for military service. The reserve system maintains an inventory of trained manpower for expansion of the armed forces or for replacing casualties in the event of war. All men between the ages of eighteen and fifty automatically belong to the reserves if they are not on active duty. Reserves are organized into two classes-Reserve I and Reserve II. The first category includes all men under age thirty-five who are not serving in the NVA, former company grade officers and NCOs under age thirty-five, and former field grade officers under age sixty. The second reserve category includes former company grade officers between ages thirty-five and sixty, former NCOs between ages thirty-five and fifty (in certain cases to age sixty), and all other men between ages thirty-five and fifty who have not served in the NVA. The main reserve group is Reserve I, which reinforces combat units. Reserve II, which would probably only be activated in event of total mobilization, is charged with reinforcing units of the rear services. In 1987 the total size of the reserve was estimated to be 400,000. In accordance with the Military Service Law and the Reservist Regulation, both of which became law on March 25, 1982, reservists have been called up for exercises more frequently than before. Moreover, call-ups were in line with the requirements of mobilization 269

East Germany: A Country Study
and a national defense emergency. The total length of the qualifying period for reservists after basic training was extended, and the role of reservists in the GST's premilitary training was expanded. These measures should be seen in conjunction with the NVA's manpower problems. In 1984 there were 6.2 million males between 17 and 30; by 1999 this figure will have dropped to 4.2 million. In the mid-1980s, an average of 121,000 young men were reaching military age annually, and almost 95,000 men-about 80 percent of that figure-were being drafted each year. The new laws also left reservists no opportunity to avoid military service. Anyone who refused to serve at all, even in the construction troops, had to be prepared to face military court proceedings and a term of imprisonment up to four years in length. Despite the stiff penalties, East German military courts had about seventy such cases pending in 1983.

The Group of Soviet Forces in Germany
The westernmost and most formidable concentration of Soviet armed might outside the borders of the Soviet Union is the GSFG. In 1987 this force of about 380,000 men, organized into 20 ground force divisions and one air army and stationed entirely in East Germany, was over twice the size of the NVA. The importance that the Soviets attach to their position in East Germany is underscored by the disparity in size between the GSFG and the other Soviet groups of forces in Eastern Europe. The Northern Group of Forces in Poland, for instance, comprised three divisions, the Central Group of Forces in Czechoslovakia numbered six divisions, and the Southern Group of Forces in Hungary had four divisions. The other groups totaled slightly more than half the size of the GSFG. The GSFG dominated not only East Germany but also the rest of Eastern Europe, not to mention the image that it projected into Western Europe. In 1987 the GSFG, under the command of General Valerii Aleksandrovich Belikov, had its headquarters in the former Wehrmacht command center in ZossenWuinsdorf, south of Berlin. In 1987 the ground forces of the GSFG were organized into five armies, which had been strengthened continually during the 1980s. These forces were fully motorized, equippcd with tactical nuclear weapons, and provided with high operational mobility. The ground forces included about 5,000 to 6,000 main battle tanks, the majority of them T-72s. The First Guards Tank Army, headquartered at Dresden, included four tank divisions and one motorized rifle division; the Second Guards Army, at Fiirstenberg, had one tank and two motorized rifle divisions; the Eighth Guards Army, at 270

A Soviet officer walks across the Bahnhofsplatz in Erfurt on his way to work Courtesy V. Jeffrey Gedmin

Members of the National People's Army undergoing training in conditions resembling those of actual combat; Soviet surface-to-air missile is in the background Courtesy Panorama DDR


East Germany. A Country Study
Weimar-Nohra, had one tank and three motorized rifle divisions; the Twentieth Guards Army, at Eberswalde, had three motorized rifle divisions; and the Third Shock Army, at Magdeburg, had four tank divisions and one motorized rifle division. In addition to the necessary artillery units at army and division levels, artillery support was provided by an independent division of rocket troops and artillery-the Thirty-fourth Artillery Division-stationed at Potsdam-Elstal and directly subordinate to the GSFG. A Spetsnaz (see Glossary) company was assigned to each army, and an independent Spetsnaz brigade was stationed in Neuruppin. Air support was provided by the Twenty-fourth Air Army, with headquarters at Wiinsdorf. It is considered the best-equipped part of the Soviet air forces. In 1987 about 80 percent of the 1,000 to 2,000 aircraft were potential carriers of nuclear weapons. The GSFG conducts its own maneuvers and training independently of the NVA. There is a program, however, called Brotherhood-in-Arms, which promotes contacts and cooperation between the East German and Soviet troops. Both the NVA and the GSFG participate in the various joint Warsaw Pact maneuvers and exercises.

Paramiltary Forces
In addition to the NVA and the Border Troops, SED military doctrine recognizes several categories of armed agencies, primarily certain agencies of the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of State Security, the Civil Defense forces, and the Working-Class Combat Groups. Western analysts generally define these additional categories, along with the GST, as paramilitary forces, although at least one source relegates the Border Troops also to the paramilitary category. Moreover, other elements of the two ministries, while not classified as armed agencies, also play a role in national security. The GST, although de facto a paramilitary organization, is not officially designated an armed agency by the East Germans because it, as a premilitary training society, cannot constitute a direct component of national defense in a state of emergency.

Agencies of the Ministry of the Interior
The members of the armed agencies of the Ministry of the Interior observe military discipline and bear rank designations. In 1987 the minister of the interior, Friedrich Dickel, for example, was a colonel general. Dickel also was chief of the People's Police, whose Alert Units, numbering some 12,000 troops, were composed of 21 battalions equipped with BTR-40 and BTR-152 armored personnel carriers and 82mm mortars. Also of military significance 272

National Security
are the Transport Police, with approximately 8,500 men in darkblue uniforms who do work related to the railroad system. They were organized into sixteen companies and equipped with small arms and RPG-7 shoulder-fired antitank grenade launchers. In addition to the armed groups, the Ministry of the Interior has other branches that control the Fire Fighters, Prison Administration, Municipal Police, Traffic Police, Criminal Police, Training Administrations, Passport Department, and registration system, as well as some 135,000 volunteer police assistants (see fig. 18).

Agencies of the Ministry of State Security
In early 1987, the Ministry of State Security was headed by General Erich Mielke, who had held the post since 1957. In 1986 the ministry had only one armed force at its disposal: the Feliks Dzierzynski Guard Regiment, named for the founder of the Cheka, the Bolshevik secret police. The approximately 7,000 members of this regiment, who served at least 3 years, were responsible for protecting government buildings and personnel. The regiment was composed of six motorized rifle battalions, one artillery battalion, and one training battalion. Its equipment included PSZH-IV armored personnel carriers, 120mm mortars, 85mm and 100mm antitank guns, ZU-23 antiaircraft guns, and helicopters. A Swiss source reported in 1986 that the troops of the Ministry of State Security also had commando units similar to the Soviet Union's Spetsnaz forces. These East German units were said to wear the uniform of the airborne troops, although with the violet collar patch of the Ministry of State Security rather than the orange one of paratroopers. They also wore the sleeve stripe of the Feliks Dzierzynski Guard Regiment. The Ministry of State Security also includes the Main Administration for Reconnaissance. This unit focuses its efforts primarily upon West Germany and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, but it also operates East German intelligence in all foreign countries. The Main Coordinating Administration of the Ministry of State Security coordinates its work with Soviet intelligence agencies. The Main Department for Communications Security and Personnel Protection provides personal security for the national leadership and maintains and operates an internal secure communications system for the government. Protection against sabotage or espionage is a function of the Administration for Security of Heavy Industry and Research and the Main Administration for Security of the Economy. The Main Administration for Struggle Against Suspicious Persons is charged with the surveillance of foreigners-particularly from the West-legally traveling or residing 273

East Germany: A Country Study



National Security
within the country. This includes the diplomatic community, tourists, and official guests. Surveillance of mail and telephone communications is the function of Administration 12. Reliability of the personnel of the NVA is the responsibility of Administration 2000, which operates a secret, unofficial network of informants within the NVA. To facilitate its mission of enforcing the political security of East Germany, the Ministry of State Security operates its own penal system, distinct from that of the Ministry of the Interior. This system comprises prison camps for political, as opposed to criminal, offenders (see fig. 19).

The Working-Class Combat Groups
The Working-Class Combat Groups, actually a workers' militia, had over 500,000 members in 1987. Since their creation in 1953, they have increasingly assumed the character of a territorial force of considerable military importance. They consist of volunteer reserve units organized around 100-member companies formed in factories and other enterprises for the purpose of providing local security to the state. For training, equipment, and supplies they are responsible to the Ministry of the Interior, specifically to the Main Administration of the People's Police. These forces had armored fighting vehicles, including SK-I armored personnel carriers; 82mm mortars; 76mm antitank guns; and 23mm and 37mm antiaircraft guns. The Combat Groups train after work and on weekends for a total of 136 hours annually. In addition, they take part in monthly exercises and a large annual exercise and occasionally perform labor duties said to benefit the national economy. Further, experienced and politically reliable Combat Group members are active in political instruction in the NVA and in military education in the schools. Finally, the Combat Groups also have been involved in East Germany's program of military aid to Africa, providing training and equipment for militia groups, in Brazzaville, for example.

Civil Defense
The minister of defense is responsible for Civil Defense, through Lieutenant General Fritz Peter, chief of Civil Defense. As of 1987, there were about 3,000 Civil Defense officers and NCOs, who work on the Civil Defense Staff that exists in each of the country's 15 districts, under military command. These forces take an oath of allegiance that differs only slightly from that of the NVA. The words "of Civil Defense" are added to all rank designations except those for generals. The highest-ranking field-grade officer, for instance, is a colonel of Civil Defense. 275

East Germany: A Country Study

T 0



Q ..








National Security
In addition to the regular personnel, in 1987 the civil defense program included several hundred thousand civilian volunteers, most of them women, who could be called upon if needed. Training was conducted for three to four hours per year, in five-year cycles, outside working hours. Basically the mission of Civil Defense is to support the armed forces and ensure their ability to operate in the territory of East Germany. In official terms, the principal mission is defined as protection of the public, the economy, vital facilities, and cultural values against the effects of military aggression, agents of mass destruction, and natural catastrophes.

Crime and Punishment
The socialist countries of Eastern Europe, and particularly East Germany, have a perception of the roots of criminal behavior that differs fundamentally from the general beliefs accepted in Western culture. This perception, based upon Marxist-Leninist social theory, strongly influences the structure of the criminal justice system and the administration of criminal justice. To understand the structure and functioning of the East German criminal justice system, it is necessary to understand this Marxist-Leninist perception of the roots of crime in society.

Public Order and Mass Participation
Crime is viewed historically as the product of class societies that have private ownership of the means of production. It is this private ownership that breeds exploitation of man by man, antagonism between individuals, and conflict between individuals and society as a whole. It feeds individual egoism that is destructive to human and community interests. In a perfected communist society where social conditions, life-styles, and human personalities have been altered radically, deviant behavior would be impossible. Under socialism, the transitional phase from capitalism to communism, crime exists, but not as a rebellion against existing conditions. Rather, it is a residue or relic of the old, imperfect society. East Germany considers itself a socialist, or transitional, society. The leadership is not so dogmatic as to ascribe all deviant behavior to social causes. It is believed that genetic or biological factors can reduce the competence of individuals below the point where normal societal influences can compensate fully. In these instances, more stringent efforts by the state to recognize criminal potential may be required. These efforts may range from genetic counseling and therapeutic abortion to early recognition and diagnosis of personality disorders in schools and the work place. 277

East Germany: A Country Study
The perception of the root causes of criminal behavior and, therefore, the attitude and approach toward addressing the problems of crime and punishment have certain fundamental characteristics that are totally foreign to traditional Western practices, even while preserving some external similarities. The administration of justice, particularly criminal justice, is viewed very much in pragmatic and utilitarian terms. The rule of law that is so important to Western political thought is subordinated to the concept of social (socialist) justice. Because criminality is viewed as a social anachronism left over from capitalism that presumably will disappear with time or is traceable to biological causes correctable by science, justice need not be tempered by legal restraint. The juridical structure of courts, judges, and lawyers, although serving an immediate need, is not fundamentally important to a socialist society. Further, the real function of law is one of educating members of society, both criminal and law-abiding, in the fulfillment of civic duties.

The Legal System
Crime control takes place on two levels. The first level involves the leadership of state organs and their functionaries, who plan all social processes. These organs, including national government agencies, local government, and industrial enterprises, have established the system of criminal law. The second level is based upon rigorous exposure, persecution, and punishment of criminals and elimination of the causes of criminal acts. This second level involves active participation by citizens through service on conflict commissions, arbitration commissions, and juries. These two levels concentrate actual power and authority in the criminal system in the hands of the government and the SED by reserving to them the sole responsibility for establishing social processes and laws. The second level involves the masses in enforcement of state laws and processes. In this sense, "involving the masses" is a euphemism for social pressure to enforce the law by creating an atmosphere of intolerance toward criminals.

The Court System
The court system is similar to that of the Soviet Union and, in its basic structure, shows clear roots in the Napoleonic Code, which underlies many of the legal systems of continental Europe. The Napoleonic Code differs in two ways from Anglo-Saxon law: it does not subscribe to the adversary system, and it does not recognize common law or precedent. In reference to the adversary system, the prosecutor in an East German court is responsible for presenting all the evidence, both for and against defendants, and the judge 278

National Security
reaches a decision based upon this presentation. A defense attorney, if present, is subordinate to the prosecutor and serves only to ensure that the presentation is balanced. The judge is bound only by law as written in the statute books. The judge interprets the law as it applies to the specific case, and that interpretation, since it is unique, sets no precedent for other judges. The court system is subordinate to the legislative branch, the People's Chamber. The Supreme Court is the highest court and establishes the jurisdiction of subordinate courts. Under the Supreme Court are district, regional, and social courts. District courts generally try major cases occurring within their geographic jurisdiction. District prosecutors, appointed by the general prosecuting attorney, present the cases in district courts. Regional courts normally try minor cases occurring within their geographic jurisdiction. As is the case in the district courts, judges in regional courts are appointed by the Supreme Court, and the regional prosecutor is appointed by the general prosecuting attorney. District courts and district prosecutors have no authority over regional courts or regional prosecutors. The court system also includes social courts of nonjudicial members established within enterprises and cooperatives for the purpose of enforcing labor discipline or moral behavior. These courts, patterned on the Soviet people's courts, are quasilegal institutions that give voice to mass social pressure on nonconforming persons. Although they are, in the strict sense of the word, extralegal, they have been placed under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, ostensibly to prevent excesses. There is also a separate military justice system, created in 1962 with the passage of the Military Criminal Law. In 1979 the jurisdiction of the military courts was greatly expanded, a reflection of increasing concern with law and order in all spheres of society. As in the case of the other courts, military prosecutors and military courts come under the final authority of the Supreme Court and the general prosecuting attorney. Military courts, however, are administered by the Main Department for Military Courts, and military prosecutors are administered by the military attorney general. Under this central umbrella, there are military courts and attorneys for the various arms of service, military districts, and formations of the NVA. Military courts exercise jurisdiction over both military personnel and civilians. The judges are NVA officers with law degrees. Military personnel may be tried for either military or civilian offenses. Civilians, at the direction of the Supreme Court, may be tried in military courts for the capital offenses of treason, espionage, and sabotage. 279

East Germany. A Country Study Penal Institutions
There are two distinct penal systems in the country. One, operated by the Ministry of the Interior, is for criminal offenses and accepts persons convicted and sentenced by the court system. Statistics on crime and prison populations are not published, and information on these subjects is scant and unreliable. The penal institutions operated by the Ministry of State Security make up a second system. Little is known of them since they operate outside the jurisdiction of the legal system. Incarceration is for political, as opposed to criminal, offenses, and sentencing may be dealt with through ministry hearings rather than the judicial process. The military legal system may impose military detention upon soldiers for minor infractions for periods from ten days to three months. This punishment is limited to males and does not constitute a conviction to be entered on criminal records.

Penal Code
The Penal Code in use in 1987 became effective on December 1, 1968, after several years of preparation. It replaced the German code of 1871 that had been extensively modified to make it compatible with the Soviet code. According to authorities, the nineteenth-century code had been based on personal relationships relevant only to private ownership of the means of production, and the compromises between it and a socialist code had never been satisfactory. The 1968 code was amended in 1974, 1977, and again in 1979. The 1979 amendment and other new legal provisions were more stringent. Authorities were given broader power, public order was generally strengthened, and police were given greater latitude in securing evidence. The code is divided into nine sections: crimes against the sovereignty of the regime and against peace, humanity, and human rights; crimes against the regime; offenses against the individual; offenses against youth and the family; offenses against socialist property; offenses against personal and private property; offenses against the general security; offenses against the regime and public order; and military offenses. Other than for its accommodation of property rights in a socialist system, the 1968 code is noteworthy in that five of its nine sections deal primarily with offenses against the regime and the social system. Punishments usually consist of fines or imprisonment but also frequently involve efforts at rehabilitation. Special considerationjob training and social rehabilitation -is usually given to juvenile offenders. Until July 1987, execution in time of peace could be 280

National Security
authorized for eleven crimes against the state and for murder. Military courts, even in peacetime, had the right to sentence both civilians and military personnel to death for a variety of offenses. On July 16, 1987, however, East Germany announced the abolition of the death penalty.

Criminal Behavior
Many observers reported an increase in crime throughout the 197 0 s and 198 0 s. In the 1970s, with population growth at virtually zero, the number of persons convicted began to rise significantly following a drop in the 1960s. A West German analyst identified young people as the most frequent offenders. The districts with the highest incidence of criminal activity all lie in the north, he determined, where the country's population base is youngest. Theft, fraud, and embezzlement accounted for 50 percent of all crimes. Drastic increases were reported in robbery, blackmail, and juvenile delinquency. Alcohol abuse was linked to about 32 percent of violent crimes. Murder remained constant, while serious economic offenses-white-collar crimes such as illegal building and graft-decreased somewhat. Some East German authorities attributed the sharp upswing in crime to the moral impairment of a small group of young people who had come under imperialist influence, while other experts also blamed domestic remnants of presocialist society and, in cases of insanity or near-insanity, biological and psychological factors. Western analysts attributed the persistence of crime largely to apathy, cynicism, and declining public morale resulting from the high regulation of society. Prevention has centered on efforts to address citizens' grievances more quickly and thoroughly; analyze and influence public opinion; instill in young people a belief that work is an honor and discipline a duty to society; use the penal system as well as the family, mass youth organizations, unions, and schools as tools in rehabilitating criminals; and encourage popular participation in law enforcement. Voluntary assistance forces, for example, help the People's Police and the Border Troops in their work. Where prevention fails, punitive measures are available, including probationary sentences, fines, restitution, and increasingly severe sentences for crimes against property motivated by capitalist influences.

Because of the communist penchant for secrecy, particularly where military issues are concerned, reliable primary source data 281

East Germany: A Country Study on East Germany's national security systems are scarce. Few good sources are available in English. The most definitive treatment of this subject comes from West German sources. The nature of West Germany's relationship with its East German neighbor, however, sometimes precludes unbiased analysis or interferes with an evenhanded approach to the subject. Scholarly research on East Germany by non-German Westerners exhibits a preference for economics, politics, demography, and other subjects less controversial than military affairs and national security. There are, however, some useful sources. A definitive source is Die NVA: Kernstuck der Landesverteidigungder DDR by Thomas M. Forster. Forster has published several editions of this book, each more professionally written and displaying better research than the last. An excellent English translation of the 1980 edition is available; as of mid- 1987 the most recent edition, dated 1983, had not yet been translated. NVA in Stichworten, edited by Ullrich Ruihmland, is a dictionary that lists terms and titles used in the NVA and describes their origin, history,

and meaning in encyclopedia-style entries. Although a bit polemical in style, it is an extremely valuable source. As of mid-1987, the 1985 edition had not been translated, although English versions of earlier editions were available. Bewaffnete Organe in der DDR: Verbande, Nationale Volksarmee und andere militarischeundparamilitirische byJoachim Nawrocki, contains a wealth of detail on the organization of the NVA and other armed agencies. Siegfried Breyer's Die Volksmarine der DDR: Entwicklung, Aufgaben, Ausrustung, published in 1985, provides excellent information on the history, missions, and equipment of the People's Navy. For data on the Border Troops, the best source is Frontdienst im Frieden: Die Grenztruppen der DDR by Peter Joachim Lapp. In English, The Military Balance by the International Institute for Strategic Studies is a good source for a current summary of the overall strength and arms inventory of East Germany. Other useful sources in English are East European Military Establishments: The Warsaw Pact Northern Tier by A. Ross Johnson and Challenges to Soviet Control in Eastern Europe by J. F. Brown and A. Ross Johnson. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Appendix A

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

Metric Conversion Coefficients and Factors Marriages, Divorces, and Infant Mortality, Selected Years, 1950-85 Annual Per Capita Consumption of Selected Agricultural Products, 1960 and 1985 Production in Key Areas, 1936 and 1950 Composition of National Income, Selected Years, 1950-85 Gross Domestic Product and National Income, Selected Years, 1950-85 Distribution of Investment by Sector, Selected Years, 1950-85 Average Annual Production of Key Products, 1956-60, 1966-70, and 1976-80 Average Annual Growth Rate of Gross Industrial Production by Sector, 1961-85 Average Monthly Income by Sector, Selected Years, 1955-85 Rank Order of East Germany's Twenty Most Important Trading Partners, Selected Years, 1960-85 Interlocking Party-State Hierarchies, 1987


Appendix A Table 1. Metric Conversion Coefficients and Factors
When you know Multiply by To find

M illimeters ..................... Centimeters ........ .................. Meters ......... ..................... Kilometers ........ ................... Hectares (10,000 M ............ Square kilometers .................... Cubic meters ....... .................. Liters ........ ....................... Kilograms ............................. .................. Metric tons ....... ................. ..................... Degrees Celsius ....................... (Centigrade)

0.04 0.39 3.3 0.62 2.47 0.39 35.3 0.26 2.2 0.98 1.1 2,204 9 divide by 5 and add 32

inches inches feet miles acres square miles cubic feet gallons pounds long tons short tons pounds degrees Fahrenheit

Table 2. Marriages, Divorces, and Infant Mortality, Selected Years, 1950-85

(per 1,000 population)
Inlant Mortalit Year Marriages D)ivorces per I(N1) I, i, Births

1950 1960 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985

........ ......... ......... ......... .......... ......... ......... ......... ....... ......... ......... ......... ......... ......... ......... ......... ......... .........

................... .................. ..................... ..................... ................ .................. .................. .................. .............. .................... .................. .................. .................. .................. .................. .................. .................. ..................


. 11.7 .9 7 7.7 7.6 .... 7.8 8.1 8.2 8.4 . 8.6 8.8 8.4 8.2 8.0 7.7 . 7 5 7.5 8.0 7.9

2.7 1.4 1.6 1.8 2.0 2.3 2.5 2.5 2.7 2.6 2.6 2.7 2.7 2.9 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.1

n.a. 38.8 18.5 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 15.9 14.0 13.1 13.1 12.9 12.1 12.3 11.4 10.7 10.0 n.a.

n.a.-not available Source: Based on information from German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwaltung fur Statistik, StatitischesJahrbuch der Deutschen Demokratishen Republik [East Berlin]. 1986. 360.


East Germany: A Country Study Table 3. Annual Per Capita Consumption of Selected Agricultural Products, 1960 and 1985
PrKltmtt Meat ...... Butter ........ ................... .................. . Unit kilograms -doliters each kilograms 1960 55 13 94 197 7 1985 96 16 106 305 13 Percent lecreasv 75 23 13 53 86

M ilk ............. ........ ................... Eggs ........ Citrus and tropical .................. fruit ......

ftir Source: Based on information from German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwaltung Deutschen Demokratischen Republik [East Berlinl, 1986, Jahrbuch der Statistik, Satistoches 282.

Table 4. Production in Key Areas, 1936 and 1950
195) Percent Prdd I Electricity .................. Unit billion kilowatt-hours million tons -do.... -do193b 14,000 101 :369 953 229 32 1 2 1L6 3.6 In ra-s, 139 136 82 140 101 78 109 99 99 98

................. Lignite . ...... ...... Sulfuric acid .......... Potash fertilizers .............

-doNitrogren fertilizers ........... -dophosphate fertilizers .......... -do...... ........ Raw steel .......... .............. -doCement ........... million head ................... Cattle ....... -do.... ...... Iaying hens ..........

fir Sturce: Based on information from German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwaltung Deutschen Demokratischen Republik [East Berlini, 1986. Statistik. Slatistisches.Jahrbuch der


Appendix A
Table 5. Composition of National Income, Selected Years, 1950-85
Year Percent Accumulation Percent Consumption Individual Scial Total

National income used domestically = 100 1950 ......... 1955 .......... 1960 ......... 1965 ........ 1970 ........... 1975 ........ 1980 ........ 1983 ........ 1985 ........ ................... ................. ................ ................... ......... ................... ................... ................... ................... 9.3 10.9 19.3 21.2 -,6 .. 23.4 22.7 17.9 17.1 80.4 78.6 70.9 68.7 63.5 63.9 64.9 69.4 70.4 10.3 10.5 9.8 10.1 10.9 12.7 12.4 12.7 12.5 90.7 89.1 80.7 78.8 74.4 76.6 77.3 82.1 82.9


Perem intsesoitent. In onstanlt prics; hase year 198"10. Source: Based on information from German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwaltung ffir Statistik, Stalintche.]ahrbuch der Detulchen Demnokratiwrhen Republik Ieast Berlin], 1986, 102,


East Germany. A Country Study Table 6. Gross Domestic Product and National Income, Selected Years, 1950-82 1
(in constant prices; base year 1980)
(; l)i)nestic Product Year Value I ndex (1950 = 1(X)) Growth Rate (in percentage) Value National Inconme Index (1950 = IO0) (rowth Rate (in iertenlage)

1950 1955

77,8 134.4

100 173

1970 1975 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985

249.5 333.6 438,8 541.8 561.9 563.8 580.2 601.6 623.2

321 429 564 696 722 725 746 773 801

n.a. 11.6:1 7.8 4 5.1 ' 6.1 6 5.7 ' 4.4 8 3.7 3.4 2.9 3.7 3.6

29.3 54.3

100 185

n.a 13.1

91.0 117.4 152.8 187.1 196.1 201.1 210.4 222.1 233.6

31(1 401 521 638 669 686 718 758 797

3.6 5.3 5.5 7 4.2 8 4.8 2.5 4.6 5.6 5.2

n.a. not available. I Gross domestic product ((GDP) includes "transfierred value" (cos of materials) and "newly created value" (prollt and wages). National lncome includes only "newly created value.'. Ntnprodut ie awtivifies (services) are no( included in either (DP lor natilonal income: Ihus they arc not clonparal~e I) teWestern cllfnlttpls ot' (GNP or n,!titmtal incoeic. In billions of GI)R marks (lir valuc ol the (;I)R mark-se (lhssary). Annual percent increase 1951-55 (average). Annual percentintrease 1956-60 (average). Annual percentincrease 1961-65 (average). Annual percenti nrtease 1966-70) (average). Annual percentincrease 1971-75 (average). Annual percent increase 1976-80 (a erage). Source: Based on information from Gcrman Democratic Republic, Zenlralverwalhung fWr

Staristik, StatistichesJahrbuch der Deutschen Dnmokraischen Republik [East Bcrlinj. 1986, 13-14.


Appendix A Table 7. Distribution of Investment by Sector, Selected Years, 1950-85 (in percentage)
Sector 19501 1960 19701 1975 14801 1983 1985

Industry................. 44.6 Construction.............. 0.8 Agriculture and forestry................ 11.7 Transport and communications .... 1:3.7 Domestic trade..............1.5 Other producing areas ... 0.3 Nonproducing areas ... 27.4 Total................... TOTAL VALUE*... 100.0 3.9

2.6 11.9 10.5 2.8 0.5 24.1 100.0 17.9

3.3 13.0) 8.7 4.6 1.5 18.8 100.0 36.4

3.5 11.8 10.4 3.7 1.0 21.2 100.0 46.0

2.5 9.7 8.5 3.0 0.6 21.8 100.0 53.1

1.2 8.b

1. 7.4 8.9 2.8 0.8 22.9 100.0

2.3 0.7 21.6 100.0 53.1


*In billions of (iI)R marks (for valuec of the GD)R mark-see Glossary). Source: Based on information from German D~emocratic Republic. Zentralverwaltung fur Statistik, Statistiches lahrbuch dee Deutschen Dernakralischen Republik [East Berlin], 1986, 105.

Table 8. Average Annual Production of Key Products, 1956-60, 1966-70, and 1976-80
Product Slaughter animals ..... Milk......................... Eggs.......................
Unit 1956-60 1966-70 1976-80

tons -lothousands

1,275,800 5,497,000 2,961,61)0

1,762,800 7,036,400 4,114,000

2,387,800 8,155,200 5,287,000

Source: Based on information from German Democratic Republic. Zentralverwaltung fujr Statistik, Staisisches Iahrbuch der Detschen Dernokratischen Republik [East Berlin], 1986, 38.


East Germany: A Country Study Table 9. Average Annual Growth Rate of Gross Industrial Production by Sector, 1961-85
(in percentage)
Energy and fuels .... ........ Chemicals ..... ............. Metallurgy ..... ............. Construction materials ...... Machinery and vehicles ..... Electric and electronic products ..... ............. Light industry .... .......... Textiles ..... ............... Food processing ..... ......... OVERALL AVERAGE .... 1961-65 4.4 7.8 4.1 6.8 7.5 9.5 4.2 2.5 3.4 5.6 1966-7(0 3.4 7.7 6.3 6.0 7.0 9.6 6.1 4.4 4.5 6.1 1971-75 2.7 8.2 6.8 7.0 5.8 9.2 5.9 5.2 5.5 6.5 1976-81 4.8 4.8 4.0 2.3 6.1 8.7 4.2 3.9 2.8 4.7 1981-85 3.7 3.8 3.7 0.7 4.6 9.2 3.1 2.4 2.2 4.0

Source: Based on information front German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwaltung far Statistik, Statistisches Jahrbuch der Deutschen Demokralischen Republik [East Berlinl, 1986, 21-22.

Table 10. Average Monthly Income by Sector,

Selected Years, 1955-85
Sector 1955 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985

Industry ... .............. 104.7 Construction ............. 100.0 Agriculture and Iorestry ... ............. 73.8 Transportation ......... 101.1 Communications .......... 78.6 Domestic trade ........... 86.6 OVERALL AVERAGE' .. 439

102.3 107.5 85.1 105.2 83.9 87.3 558

102.5 107.2 89.5 105.0 89.7 83.8 640

101.0 109.3 93.2 110.8 86.7 87.7 762

99.8 105.8 98.8 110.4 91.2 89.0 897

100.9 101.1 97.1 109.4 90.1 87.9 1,030

100.6 101.6 94.4 108.9 94.3 89.6 1,140

Percentage ofoverall average. Methods ofraltulation were ahtered slightly in 1973 In ;DR marks (for value of the GiDR mark-see Glossary). Source: Based on inlormation from German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwaltung ftir Statistik, Statistischesflahrbuch der Deutvchen Demokraischen Republik East Berlini, 1986. 129.


Appendix A Table 11. Rank Order of East Germany's Twenty Most Important Trading Partners, Selected Years, 1960-85
(in percentage)
Country 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985

Soviet Union ................... ............. West Germany ... ............ Czechoslovakia .... ................... Poland ..... .................. Hungary .... .................. Bulgaria .... ................. Romania ..... ................... Austria .... Switzerland and ...... Liechtenstein ....... ................... Britain ..... ................... France ..... ................ Yugoslavia ..... Belgium and ............. Luxembourg ... Cuba .......................... ............... Netherlands ..... ................... Sweden .... ................... Japan ..... ...................... Iran ..... ...................... Iraq ..... ... ................ Italy ......

42.8 10.3 8.6 6.7 4.3 2.8 2.3 0.9 0.6 1.4 0.6 1.8 0.8 0.2 1.0 1.0 0. 1 0.1 0.1 .0.6

42.8 9.5 9.4 7.0 4.3 3.2 2.4 0.9 0.5 1.3 1.{) 2.4 0.8 0.9 1.1 1.0 0.4 0.1 0.1 0.7

39.1 10.2 9.5 7.3 5.2 3.5 2.4 0.6 1.5 14 1.2 1.4 0.7 1.2 1.4 1.0 0.3 0.1 0. 1 0.9

35.7 8.7 9.3 8.9 5.4 3.2 2.7 1.1 1,5 1.4 1.5 2.1 1.2 0.8 1.6 1.3 0.9 0.1 1.0 0.8

35.5 8.4 7.7 6.4 5.3 3.2 3.2 1,6 2.1 1.5 18 2.3 1.3 0.9 1.5 1.2 0.9 (0.5 1.3 0.8

38.8 8.3 7.2 5.4 4.9 2.9 2.8 24 1.8 1.5 1.5 1.4 1.3 1L2 1.0 0.9 (0.9 0.7 0.6 0.5

Source: Based on information from German Democratic Republic, Zentralverwahung fir Statistik, Statistisches jahrbuchder Deutschen Demokratschen Republik IEast Berlin 1, 1986, 421.


East Germany. A Country Study


R 2 E











E .1 <








Appendix A



















hr .




East Germany. A Country Study
























Appendix A




Appendix B The Council for Mutual Economic Assistance
THE FOUNDING of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (also referred to as Comecon, CMEA, CEMA, or the Council) dates from a 1949 communiqu6 agreed upon by the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, and Romania. The precise reasons for Comecon's formation in the aftermath of World War II are quite complex, given the political and economic turmoil of that time. However, Joseph Stalin's desire to enforce Soviet domination of the small states of Eastern Europe and to mollify some states that had expressed interest in the Marshall Plan (see Glossary) were the primary factors in Comecon's formation. The stated purpose of the organization was to enable member states "to exchange economic experiences, extend technical aid to one another, and to render mutual assistance with respect to raw materials, foodstuffs, machines, equipment, etc." Until the late 1960s, cooperation was the official term used to describe Comecon activities. In 1971, with the development and adoption of the Comprehensive Program for the Further Extension and Improvement of Cooperation and the Further Development of Socialist Economic Integration by Comecon Member Countries, Comecon activities were officially termed integration. In simplest terms, economic integration is defined as internationalizing the production of manufactured and semimanufactured goods, resources, and services. More specifically, integration attempts to equalize "differences in relative scarcities of goods and services between states through the deliberate elimination of barriers to trade and other forms of interaction." Although such equalization has not been a pivotal point in the formation and implementation of Comecon's economic policies, improved economic integration has always been Comecon's goal. Soviet domination of Comecon is a function of its economic, political, and military power. The Soviet Union possesses 90 percent of Comecon members' land and energy resources, 70 percent of their population, 65 percent of their national income, and industrial and military capacities second in the world only to those of the United States. The location of many Comecon committee headquarters in Moscow and the large number of Soviet nationals in positions of authority also testify to the power of the Soviet Union within the organization. 297

East Germany: A Country Study
Soviet efforts to exercise political power over its Comecon partners, however, have been met with determined opposition. The "sovereign equality" of members, as described in the Comecon Charter, assures members that if they do not wish to participate in a Comecon project, they may abstain. East European members have frequently invoked this principle in fear that economic interdependence would further reduce political sovereignty. Thus, neither Comecon nor the Soviet Union as a major force within Comecon has supranational authority. Although this fact ensures some degree of freedom from Soviet economic domination of the other members, it also deprives Comecon of necessary power to achieve maximum economic efficiency. As of 1987, those countries holding full membership in Comecon were the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, the German Democratic Republic (East Germany), Hungary, Romania, Poland, Cuba, the Mongolian People's Republic (Mongolia), and Vietnam. (For the purposes of this appendix, the phrases "East bloc," the "six European members," or the "European members of Comecon" are used interchangeably to refer to Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Romania. When Yugoslavia and Albania are referred to, they are mentioned specifically by name.) The primary documents governing the objectives, organization, and functions of Comecon are the Charter of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (first adopted in 1959 and subsequently amended; all references herein are to the amended 1974 text); the Comprehensive Program for the Further Extension and Improvement of Cooperation and the Further Development of Socialist Economic Integration by the Comecon Member Countries, adopted in 1971; and the Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress up to the Year 2000, adopted in December 1985. The 1985 Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress and the rise to power of Soviet general secretary Mikhail S. Gorbachev have increased Soviet influence in Comecon operations and have led to attempts to give Comecon some degree of supranational authority. The Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress seeks to improve economic cooperation through the development of a more efficient and interconnected scientific and technical base.

Membership, Structure, Nature, and Scope Membership
In a January 1949 meeting in Moscow, representatives of Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and the Soviet 298

Appendix B
Union reached the formal decision to establish the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance. The communiqu6 announcing the event cited the refusal of these countries to "subordinate themselves to the dictates of the Marshall Plan" (see Glossary) and their intention to resist the trade boycott imposed by "the United States, Britain and certain other countries of Western Europe" as the major factors contributing to the decision "to organize a more broadly based economic cooperation among the countries of the people's democracy and the USSR." Albania joined the six original members in February 1949, and East Germany entered Comecon in 1950. (Albania, although it had not formally revoked its membership as of mid-1987, stopped participating in Comecon activities in 1961.) Mongolia acceded to membership in 1962, and in the 1970s Comecon expanded its membership to include Cuba (1972) and Vietnam (1978). As of 1987 there were ten full members: the Soviet Union, six East European countries, and three extraregional members (see table A, this Appendix). Geography, therefore, no longer unites Comecon members. Wide variations in economic size and level of economic development have also tended to generate divergent interests among the member countries. All these factors have combined to give rise to significant differences in the member states' expectations about the benefits to be derived from membership in Comecon. Unity is provided instead by political and ideological factors. All Comecon members are "united by a commonality of fundamental class interests and the ideology of Marxism-Leninism" and have common approaches to economic ownership (state versus private) and management (plan versus market). In 1949 the ruling communist parties of the founding states were also linked internationally through the Cominform (see Glossary), from which Yugoslavia had been expelled the previous year. Although the Cominform was disbanded in 1956, interparty links continue to be strong among Comecon members, and all participate in periodic international conferences of communist parties. Comecon provides a mechanism through which its leading member, the Soviet Union, has sought to foster economic links with and among its closest political and military allies. The East European members of Comecon are also militarily allied with the Soviet Union in the Warsaw Pact (see Appendix C). Official statements stress, however, that Comecon is an open international organization. Its Charter (Article II, Paragraph 2) invites membership from "other countries which share the aims and principles of the Council and have expressed their willingness 299

East Germany: A Country Study Table A. National Participationin the Councilfor Mutual Economic Assistance (Comecon), November 1986 1 Member Countries Bulgaria (1949) Czechoslovakia (1949) Hungary (1949) Poland (1949) Romania (1949) Soviet Union (1949) Albania (1949) 2 East Germany (1950) Mongolia (1962) Cuba (1972) Vietnam (1978)

Nonmember Countries That regularly sent observer delegations to annual sessions in 1981-86: That have concluded formal agreements of cooperation with Comecon: Yugoslavia (1964) Finland (1973) Iraq (1975) Mexico (1975) Nicaragua (1983) Mozambique (1985)

Afghanistan Angola Ethiopia Laos Mozambique Nicaragua South Yemen Yugoslavia
Dates of accession in parentheses,

2 Albania joined Comecon in February 1949, one month after the organization was

formed by the original six members. Although it has not formally revoked its membership, Albania has not participated in Comecon activities since 1961.

to assume the obligations contained in the . . .Charter." In the late 1950s, a number of other communist-ruled countries-China, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea), Mongolia, Vietnam, and Yugoslavia-were invited to participate as observers in Comecon sessions. Although Mongolia and Vietnam later gained full membership, China stopped attending Comecon sessions after 1961. Yugoslavia negotiated a form of associate status in the organization, specified in its 1964 agreement with Comecon. 300

Appendix B
There are four kinds of relationships a country may have with Comecon: full membership, associate membership, nonsocialist I"cooperant" status, and "observer country" status. Mutual agreement determines the precise nature of the relationship. As has been noted, Comecon has ten full members. Yugoslavia is the only country considered to have associate member status. On the basis of the 1964 agreement, Yugoslavia participates in twenty-one of the thirty-two key Comecon institutions as if it were a full member. Finland, Iraq, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Mozambique have a nonsocialist cooperant status with Comecon. Because the governments of these countries are not empowered to conclude agreements in the name of private companies, the governments do not take part in Comecon operations. They are represented in Comecon by commissions made up of members of the government and the business community. The commissions are empowered to sign various "framework" agreements with Comecon's Joint Commission on Cooperation. Since 1957 Comecon has allowed certain countries with communist or pro-Soviet governments to attend sessions as observers. In November 1986, delegations from Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Laos, Nicaragua, and the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen) attended the 42d Council Session as observers.

Although not formally part of the organization's hierarchy, the Conference of First Secretaries of Communist and Workers' Parties and of the Heads of Government of the Comecon Member Countries is Comecon's most important organ. These party and government leaders gather for conference meetings regularly to discuss topics of mutual interest. Because of the rank of conference participants, decisions made here have considerable influence on the actions taken by Comecon and its organs. The official hierarchy of Comecon consists of the Session of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance, the Executive Committee of the Council, the Secretariat of the Council, four council committees, twenty-four standing commissions, six interstate conferences, two scientific institutes, and several associated organizations (see fig. A, this Appendix). These bodies will be examined in turn. The Session, officially the highest Comecon organ, examines fundamental problems of socialist economic integration and directs the activities of the Secretariat and other subordinate organizations, Delegations from each Comecon member country attend these meetings. Prime ministers usually head the delegations, which meet during the second quarter of each year in a member country's 301

East Germany: A Country Study
capital (the location of the meeting is determined by a system of rotation based on the Cyrillic alphabet). All interested parties must consider recommendations handed down by the Session. A treaty or other kind of legal agreement implements adopted recommendations. Comecon itself may adopt decisions only on organizational and procedural matters pertaining to itself and its organs. Each country appoints one permanent representative to maintain relations between members and Comecon between annual meetings. An extraordinary Session, such as the one in December 1985, may be held with the consent of at least one-third of the members. Such meetings usually take place in Moscow. The highest executive organ in Comecon, the Executive Committee, is entrusted with elaborating policy recommendations and supervising their implementation between sessions. In addition, it supervises work on plan coordination and scientific-technical cooperation. Composed of one representative from each member country, usually a deputy chairman of the Council of Ministers, the Executive Committee meets quarterly, usually in Moscow, In 1971 and 1974, the Executive Committee acquired economic departments that rank above the standing commissions. These economic departments considerably strengthened the authority and importance of' the Executive Committee. There are four council committees: Council Committee for Cooperation in Planning, Council Committee for Scientific and Technical Cooperation, Council Committee for Cooperation in Material and Technical Supply, and Council Committee for Cooperation in Machine Building. Their mission is "to ensure the comprehensive examination and a multilateral settlement of the major problems of cooperation among member countries in the economy, science, and technology." All committees are headquartered in Moscow and usually meet there. These committees advise the standing commissions, the Secretariat, the interstate conferences, and the scientific institutes in their areas of specialization. Their jurisdiction is generally wider than that of the standing commissions because they have the right to make policy recommendations to other Comecon organizations. The Council Committee for Cooperation in Planning is the most important of the four. It coordinates the national economic plans of Comecon members. As such, it ranks in importance only after the Session and the Executive Committee. Made up of the chairmen of Comecon members' national central planning offices, the Council Committee for Cooperation in Planning draws up draft agreements forjoint projects, adopts a resolution approving these projects, and recomnri:nds approval to the concerned parties. If 302

Appendix B









z.*. **








East Germany: A Country Study
its decisions were not subject to approval by national governments and parties, this committee would be considered Comecon's supranational planning body. The international Secretariat, Comecon's only permanent body, is Comecon's primary economic research and administrative organ. The secretary, who has been a Soviet official since Comecon's creation, is the official Comecon representative to Comecon member states and to other states and international organizations. Subordinate to the secretary are his deputy and the various departments of the Secretariat, which generally correspond to the standing commissions. The Secretariat's responsibilities include preparation and organization of Comecon sessions and other meetings conducted under the auspices of Comecon; compilation of digests on Comecon activities; conduct of economic and other research for Comecon members; and preparation of recommendations on various issues concerning Comecon operations. In 1956 eight standing commissions were set up to help Comecon make recommendations pertaining to specific economic sectors. The commissions have been rearranged and renamed a number of times since the establishment of the first eight. In 1986 there were twentyfour standing commissions (see fig. B, this Appendix). Each commission is headquartered in the capital of a member country and headed by one of that country's leading authorities in the field addressed by the commission. The Secretariat supervises the actual operations of the commissions. The standing commissions have authority only to make recommendations, which must then be approved by the Executive Committee, presented to the Session, and ratified by the interested member countries. Commissions usually meet twice a year in Moscow. The six interstate conferences (on water management, internal trade, legal matters, inventions and patents, pricing, and labor affairs) serve as forums for discussing shared issues and experiences. They are purely consultative and generally act in an advisory capacity to the Executive Committee or its specialized committees. The scientific institutes on standardization and on economic problems of the world socialist system concern themselves with theoretical problems of international cooperation. Both are headquartered in Moscow and are staffed by experts from various member countries. Several affiliated agencies, having a variety of relationships with Comecon, exist outside the official Comecon hierarchy. They serve to develop "direct links between appropriate bodies and organizations of Comecon member countries." These affiliated agencies are divided into two categories: intergovernmental economic 304

Comecon headquarters, Moscow

organizations (which work on a higher level in the member countries and generally deal with a wider range of managerial and coordinative activities) and international economic organizations (which work closer to the operational level of research, production, or trade). A few examples of the former are the International Bank for Economic Cooperation (manages the transferable ruble system), the International Investment Bank (in charge of financing joint projects), and Intermetal (encourages cooperation in ferrous metallurgy). International economic organizations generally take the form of either joint enterprises, international economic associations or unions, or international economic partnerships. The latter includes Interatominstrument (nuclear machinery producers), Intertekstilmash (textile machinery producers), and Haldex (a HungarianPolish joint enterprise for reprocessing coal slag). Nature of Operation Comecon is an interstate organization through which members attempt to coordinate economic activities of mutual interest and to develop multilateral economic, scientific, and technical cooperation. The Charter states that "the sovereign equality of all members" is fundamental to the organization and procedures of Comecon. The Comprehensive Program further emphasizes that the processes of integration of members' economies are "completely voluntary and do not involve the creation of supranational bodies." 305

East Germany: A Country Study
Hence under the provisions of the Charter, each country has the right to equal representation and one vote in all organs of Comecon, regardless of the country's economic size or the size of its contribution to Comecon's budget. The "interestedness" provisions of the Charter reinforce the principle of "sovereign equality." Comecon's recommendations and decisions can be adopted only upon agreement among the interested members, and each has the right to declare its "interest" in any matter under consideration. Furthermore, in the words of the Charter, "recommendations and decisions shall not apply to countries that have declared that they have no interest in a particular matter." Although Comecon recognizes the principle of unanimity, disinterested parties do not have a veto but rather the right to abstain from participation. A declaration of disinterest cannot block a project unless the disinterested party's participation is vital. Otherwise, the Charter implies that the interested parties may proceed without the abstaining member, affirming that a country that has declared a lack of interest "may subsequently adhere to the recommendations and decisions adopted by the remaining members of the Council." The descriptive term Comecon applies to all multilateral activities involving members of the organization and is not restricted to the direct functions of Comecon and its organs. This usage may be extended as well to bilateral relations among members, because in the system of socialist international economic relations, multilateral accords- typically of a general nature-tend to be implemented through a set of more detailed, bilateral agreements.

Comecon Versus the European Economic Community
Although Comecon is loosely referred to as the "European Economic Community (EEC) of Eastern Europe," important contrasts exist between the two organizations. Both organizations administer economic integration; however, their economic structure, size, balance, and influence differ. The EEC incorporates the 270 million people of Western Europe into economic association through intergovernmental agreements aimed at maximizing profits and economic efficiency on a national and international scale. It is a regionally, not ideologically, integrated organization, whose members have all attained an accomplished level of industrialization and are considered to be roughly equal trading partners. The EEC is a supranational body that can adopt decisions (such as removing tariffs) and enforce them. Activity by members is based on initiative and enterprise from below (on the individual or enterprise level) and is strongly influenced by market forces. 306

Appendix B

M hEnecr Industry (East Berlin, 19756)1 Nonferrous Metallurgy (Budapest, 1956) Fers Metallurgy (Mow 96) F~p

Oil and Gas industry (Bucharest, 1956) 1 5 w rM ,naower (Mo,,, 195 Foreign Trade (Moscow, 1956)



Machine Building (Prague, 1956)

Agriculture (Sofia, 1956)

Coal Industry (Warsaw. 1956)

Construction (East Berlin.1958)

Light Industry (Prague, 1958)

Transportation (Warsaw, 1958)

Peaceful Utilization of Atomnic

Energy (Moscow, 1960)1

Standardization (East Berlin, 1962)

Currency and Finance (Moscow, 1962)]
Radio Technology and Electronics
o(Budapest, 1963)

F [

Statistics (Moscow, 1962)
F°nso fia, 1963


Geology (Ulan Bator, 1963) Civil Aviation (Moscow. 1975) Now Materials and Technologies for 2
Their Production and Development

ost and Communications


alth (Moscow, 1975)



2These twocomissionsYorefomedsomtime after 1980. They weepobby formedas a prtof th Comprehensive Program of Scientific and Technical Progress approved at the 41 st Council Session in December 1985. The location of their headquarters is unknown.

Source: Based on information from O.A. Chukanov, ed., Nauchno-tkhicheskoe sotrudnichestvo stran SE V, Moscow, 1986, 10-11; and Jozef M. van Brabant, Socialist Economic Integration, Cambridge, 1980, 189.

Figure B. Comecon Standing Commissions, 1986
Comecon joins together 450 million people in 10 countries and on 3 continents. The level of industrialization from country to country differs greatly: the organization links three underdeveloped 307

East Germany: A Country Study
countries-Cuba, Mongolia, and Vietnam-with some highly industrialized states. Likewise, a large national income difference exists between European and non-European members. The physical size, military power, and political and economic resource base of the Soviet Union make it the dominant member. In trade among Comecon members, the Soviet Union usually provides raw materials, and East European countries provide finished equipment and machinery. The three underdeveloped Comecon members have a special relationship with the other seven. Comecon realizes disproportionately more political than economic gains from its heavy contributions to these three countries' underdeveloped economies. (see Mongolia, Cuba, and Vietnam, this Appendix). Socialist economic integration, or "plan coordination," forms the basis of Comecon's activities. In this system, which mirrors the member countries' planned economies, the decisions handed down from above ignore the influences of market forces or private initiative. Comecon has no supranational authority to make decisions or to implement them. Its recommendations can only be adopted with the full concurrence of interested parties and do not affect those members who declare themselves disinterested parties.

Early Years
During Comecon's early years (through 1955), its sessions were convened on an ad hoc basis. The organization lacked clear structure and operated without a charter until a decade after its founding. These loose arrangements reflected the limited goals of Comecon at the time and the character of the Marshall Plan (also governed by a loose structure), to which Comecon served as a response. From 1949 to 1953, Comecon's function consisted primarily of redirecting trade of member countries toward each other and introducing import-replacement industries, thus making members economically more self-sufficient. Little was done to solve economic problems through a regional policy. This was a period, moreover, when their first five-year plans, formulated along the Soviet model, preoccupied the East European members. In the headlong pursuit of parallel industrialization strategies, East European governments turned their attention inward. Because of Stalin's distrust of multilateral bodies, bilateral ties with the Soviet Union quickly came to dominate the East European members' external relations. Each country dealt with the Soviets on a one-to-one basis by means of direct consultations with Moscow through local Soviet missions. 308

Appendix B
Although reparations transfers (extracted by the Soviet Union in the innmcdiate postwar years from those East European states it regarded as former World War II enemies) had been replaced by more normal trade relations, outstanding reparations obligations were not halted until 1956. In these circumstances, there was scarcely need or scope for multilateral policies or institutions.

Rediscovery of Comecon after Stalin's Death
After Stalin's death in 1953, however, new leaders and new approaches emerged in the countries of thie region. The more industrialized and the more trade dependent of the East European countries (Czechoslovakia, East Germany, and Poland) had belatedly recognized the need to adapt the Soviet autarkic model to their own requirements. New approaches to foreign trade emerged during discussions of economic reform. Given their isolation from the rest of the world and the dominance of intrabloc trade in their external relations, interest in these countries inevitably centered on new forms of regional cooperation. For small, centrally planned economies, this meant the need to develop a mechanism through which to coordinate investment and trade policies. Instability in Eastern Europe and integration in Western Europe increased the desirability of regularizing intrabloc relations in a more elaborate institutional framework. The 1955 Warsaw Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance (see Appendix C) and its implementing machinery reinforced political-military links. On the economic front, Comecon was rediscovered. The example of the 1957 Treaty of Rome (see Glossary), which initiated the processes of West European economic integration, gave impetus and direction to Comecon's revival. Rapid Growth in Comecon Activity, 1956-63 The years 1956 to 1963 witnessed the rapid growth of'Comecon institutions and activities, especially after the 1959 Charter went into effect. Comecon, for example, launched a program to unify the electrical power systems of its member states and in 1962 created the Central Dispatching Board to manage the unified system. The organization took similar steps to coordinate railroad and river transport. In 1963 a special bank, the International Bank for Economic Cooperation, was created to facilitate financial settlements among members. In this period, Comecon also undertook a number of bilateral and multilateral investment projects. The most notable project led to the coordinated construction of the Friendship (Druzhba) oil pipeline for the transport and distribution of crude oil from the Soviet Union to Eastern Europe. The joint Institute 309

East Germany: A Country Study
for Nuclear Research, established in 1956, initiated cooperation in another area of long-term importance. Parallel to these developments, the Soviet Union led efforts to coordinate the investment strategies of the members in the interest of a more rational pattern of regional specialization, increased productivity, and a more rapid overtaking of the capitalist economies. These efforts culminated in 1962 with the adoption at the 15th Council Session of the Basic Principles of the International Socialist Division of Labor. Although the principles of specialization were generally favored by the more industrial, northern-tier states, the less developed East European countries were concerned that such specialization would lead to a concentration of industry in the already established centers and would thus thwart their own ambitious industrialization plans. Moreover the increased economic interdependence that the Basic Principles called for had inevitable political connotations. The latter were reinforced in 1962 by articles and speeches by Soviet party leader Nikita Khrushchev proposing a central Comecon planning organ to implement the Basic Principles and foreseeing the evolution of a "socialist commonwealth" based on a unified regional economy. These proposals provoked strong and open reaction from Romania on the grounds of "sovereign equality" of members, as articulated most forcefully in the April 1964 Declaration of the Romanian Central Committee. Romania's opposition (combined with the more passive resistance of some other members) succeeded in forestalling supranational planning and reinforcing the interestedparty provisions of the Charter. The institutional compromise was the creation of the Bureau for Integrated Planning, which was attached to the Executive Committee and limited to an advisory role on coordination of members' development plans. The Basic Principles, having lost their momentum, were superseded several years later by the Comprehensive Program.

A Lull and Subsequent Revitalization in the Late 1960s
After the fall of Khrushchev in 1964, the new Soviet leadership was preoccupied with internal matters, and the East European countries were themselves busy with programs of economic reform. A comparative lull in Comecon activities ensued, which lasted until well after the 1968 Soviet-led intervention in Czechoslovakia. By the end of the 1960s, Eastern Europe had been shaken by the 1968 events, and there was an obvious need to revitalize programs that would strengthen regional cohesion. In the late 1960s, the question of how to proceed with plans for economic integration received considerable discussion in specialized 310

Appendix B
journals and at international meetings of experts. Disillusioned by traditional instruments and concerned with the need to decentralize planning and management in their domestic economies, the reformers argued for the strengthening of market relations among Comecon states. The conservatives continued to stress the importance of planned approaches. If carried to a logical extreme, the latter would involve supranational planning of major aspects of members' economies and the inevitable loss of national autonomy over domestic investment policy. The old conflict between planned approaches to regional specialization and the principle of' sovereign equality could not be avoided in any discussion of the mechanism for future cooperation. The Comprehensive Program for Socialist Economic Integration, 1971 The controversy over sup-rinational planning led to a compromise in the form of the 1971 Comprehensive Program for the Further Extension and Improvement of Cooperation and the Further Development of Socialist Economic Integration, which laid the guidelines for Comecon activity through 1990. The Comprehensive Program incorporated elements of both the market and the plan approaches. Following the market approach, the Comprehensive Program sought to strengthen the role of money, prices, and exchange rates in intra-Comecon relations and to encourage direct contacts among lower level economic entities in the member countries. At the same time, the Comprehensive Program called for more joint planning on a sectoral basis through interstate bodies that would coordinate members' activities in a given sector. New organs were also envisaged in the form of international associations that would engage in actual operations in a designated sector on behalf of the participating countries. Finally, the Comprehensive Program emphasized the need for multilateral projects to develop new regional sources of fuels, energy, and raw materials. Such projects were to be jointly planned, financed, and executed. The Comprehensive Program introduced a new concept in relations among members: "socialist economic integration." Section I, Paragraph 2 of the Comprehensive Program refers to the need "to intensify and improve" cooperation among members and "to develop socialist economic integration." This phrasing, which has since become standard, implies that the latter is a new and higher level of interaction, "a process of the international socialist division of labor, the drawing closer of [member states'] economies and the formation of modern, highly effective national economic structures." The Comprehensive Program avoids, however, 311

East Germany. A Country Study
the suggestion of ultimate fusion of members' economies that had been contained in the 1962 Basic Principles. It sets limits to the integrative process in the following terms: "Socialist economic integration is completely voluntary and does not involve the creation of supranational bodies." The term integration had formerly been used to designate the activities of Western regional organizations such as the EEC. Its new usage in the Comprehensive Program suggested parity of status between Comecon and the EEC. Under subsequent amendments to its Charter, the competence of Comecon to deal with other international organizations and third countries on behalf of its members was made clear. Comecon sought to attract the participation of developing countries in its activities. The language of the Comprehensive Program may thus also be regarded as an attempt to revitalize the image of Comecon in order to make association with it an attractive alternative to associated status with the EEC. Comecon members adopted the Comprehensive Program at a time when they were actively developing economic relations with the rest of the world, especially with the industrialized Western economies. The Comprehensive Program viewed the two sets of policies as complementary and affirmed that "because the international socialist division of labor is effected with due account taken of the world division of labor, the Comecon member countries shall continue to develop economic, scientific, and technological ties with other countries, irrespective of their social and political system." In the years following the adoption of the Comprehensive Program, Comecon made some progress toward strengthening market relations among members. The Comprehensive Program's objectives proved somewhat inconsistent with the predominant trends within members' economies in the 1970s, which was a period of recentralization- rather than decentralization-of domestic systems of planning and management. The major exception to this lack of progress lay in the area of intra-Comecon pricing and payment, where the expansion of relations with the West contributed to the adoption of prices and extra-plan settlements closer to international norms. Achievements under the Comprehensive Program have fallen under the heading of planned approaches, especially in the area of joint resource development projects. A second Comecon bank, the International Investment Bank, was established in 1970 to provide a mechanism for the joint financing of such projects. In 1973 Comecon decided to draw up a general plan incorporating these measures. A number of projects formulated in the years immediately following adoption of the Comprehensive Program were then assembled in a document signed at the


Appendix B
29th Council Session in 1975. Entitled the "Concerted Plan for Multilateral Integration Measures," the document covered the 1976-80 five-year-plan period and was proclaimed as the first general plan for the Comecon economies. The joint projects included in the plan were largely completed in the course of the plan period. A second major initiative toward implementation of the Comprehensive Program came in 1976 at the 30th Council Session, when a decision was made to draw up Long-Term Target Programs for Cooperation in major economic sectors and subsectors. The session designated a number of objectives to which target programs would be directed: "guarantee of the economically based requirements of Comecon member countries for basic kinds of energy, fuels, and raw materials; the development of the machine-building industries on the basis of intense specialization and cooperation in production; the fulfillment of national demands for basic foodstuffs and industrial consumer goods; and modernization and development of transport links among member countries." The 32d Council Session, held in 1978, approved target programs for cooperation through 1990 in the first two areas, as well as in agriculture and the food industries. These programs established the commitments to multilateral cooperation that member countries were to take into account when drawing up their five-year plans for the 1980s. By the end of the 1970s, with the exception of Poland's agricultural sector, the economic sectors of all Comecon countries had converted to the socialist system. Member states had restructured their economies to emphasize industry, transportation, communications, and material and technical supply, and they had decreased the share of resources devoted to agricultural development. Within industry, member states devoted additional funds to machine building and production of chemicals. Socialist economic integration resulted in the production of goods capable of competing on the world market. The 1980s Most Comecon countries ended their 1981-85 five-year plans with decreased extensive economic development (see Glossary), increased expenses for fuel and raw materials, and decreased dependency on the West for both credit and hard currency imports. In the early 1980s, external economic relations had greater impact on the Comecon countries than ever before. When extending credit to East European countries, Western creditors did so assuming that the Soviet Union would offer financial assistance in the event that 313

East Germany. A Country Study
payment difficulties arose. This principle, which has always been rejected in the East bloc, proved inoperable in the aftermath of the Polish crisis of 1979-82. The sharp rise in interest rates in the West put the Polish debt at an excessively high level, beyond the amount that the Soviet Union could cover. The resulting liquidity shortage (see Glossary) that occurred in all Comecon countries in 1981 forced them to reduce hard-currency imports. In the 1980s, high interest rates and the increased value of the United States dollar on international markets made debt servicing more expensive. Thus, reducing indebtedness to the West also became a top priority within Comecon. From 1981 to 1985, the European countries of Comecon attempted to promote the faster growth of exports over imports and sought to strengthen intraregional trade, build up an increased trade surplus, and decrease indebtedness to Western countries. In the 1980s, Comecon sessions were held on their regular annual schedule. The two most notable meetings were the special sessions called in June 1984 and December 1985. The first summit-level meeting of Comecon member states in fifteen years was held with much fanfare onJune 12-14, 1984, in Moscow (the 23d "Special" Session of Comecon Member Countries). The meeting was held to discuss coordination of economic strategy and long-term goals in view of the "differing perspectives and contrary interests" that had developed among Comecon members since 1969. More specifically, the two fundamental objectives of the meeting were to strengthen unity among members and establish a closer connection between the production base, scientific and technological progress, and capital construction. However, despite the introduction of proposals for improving efficiency and cooperation in six key areas, Western and some Eastern analysts claimed that the meeting was anticlimactic and even a failure. The ideas and results of the June 14 session were elaborated at the Extraordinary 41 st Council Session, which was held on December 17-18, 1985, in Moscow. The meeting was heralded in the Comecon community as "one of the more memorable events in Comecon history." This special session featured the culmination of several years of work on the new Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress up to the Year 2000. It aimed to create "a firm base for working out an agreed, and in some areas, unified scientific and technical policy and the practical implementation, in the common interest, of higher achievements in science and technology." The Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress up to the Year 2000 was originally to be ratified in 1986, 314

Appendix B
but the Soviets advocated an earlier date of completion to enable the Comecon countries to incorporate their commitments to implement the program in their next five-year plans (which started in January 1986). The program laid out sizable tasks in five key areas: electronics, automation systems, nuclear energy, development of new materials, and biotechnology. It sought to restructure and modernize the member states' economies to counteract constraints on labor and material supplies. The need to move to intensive production techniques within Comecon was evident from the fact that from 1961 to 1984 the overall material intensiveness of production did not improve substantially. The 1985 program provided a general framework for Comecon's new direction of development. Details were to be settled in bilateral agreements.

Cooperation under the 1971 Comprehensive Program
The distinction between "market" relations and "planned" relations made in the discussions within Comecon prior to the adoption of the 1971 Comprehensive Program remains a useful approach to understanding Comecon activities. Comecon remains in fact a mixed system, combining elements of both plan and market economies. Although official rhetoric emphasizes regional planning, it must be remembered that intra-Comecon relations continue to be conducted among national entities not governed by any supranational authority. They thus interact on a decentralized basis according to terms negotiated in bilateral and multilateral agreements on trade and cooperation.

Market Relations and Instruments
It is not surprising, given the size of the Soviet economy, that intra-Comecon trade has been dominated by exchanges between the Soviet Union and the other members. Exchanges of Soviet fuels and raw materials for capital goods and consumer manufactures have characterized trade, particularly among the original members. The liquidity shortage in the early 1980s forced the European Comecon countries to work to strengthen the importance of intraregional trade. In the early 1980s, intraregional trade rose to 60 percent of foreign trade of Comecon countries as a whole; for individual members it ranged from 45 to 50 percent in the case of Hungary, Romania, and the Soviet Union, to 83 percent for Cuba and 96 percent for Mongolia. Trade among the members is negotiated on an annual basis and in considerable detail at the governmental level and is then followed up by interenterprise contracts. Early Comecon efforts to facilitate trade among members concentrated on development of uniform 315

East Germany: A Country Study
technical, legal, and statistical standards and on enouragement of long-term trade agreements. The 1971 Comprehensive Program sought to liberalize the system somewhat by recommending broad limits to "fixed-quota" trade among members (trade subject to quantitative or value targets set by bilateral trade agrecments). Section VI, Paragraph 19 of the Comprehensive Program affirms that ''mutual trade in commodities for which no quotas are established shall be carried on beginning in 1971 with a view to stimulating the development of trade turnover, through expansion of the range and assortment of traded commodities, and to making trade in these commodities more brisk." Later in the same paragraph the Comprehensive Program calls on members to "seek opportunities to develop the export and import of quota-free commodities and to create conditions essential for trade in such commodities." There is no evidence, however, that this appeal has had significant effect or that quota-free trade has grown in importance under the program. Prices The 1971 Comprehensive Program also called for improvement in the Comecon system of foreign trade prices. Administratively set prices, such as those used in intra-Comecon trade, do not reflect costs or relative scarcities of inputs and outputs. For this reason, intra-Comecon trade has been based on world market prices. By 1971 a price system governing exchanges among members had developed, under which prices agreed on through negotiation were fixed for five-year periods (corresponding to those of the synchronized, five-year plans of the members). These contract prices were based on adjusted world market prices averaged over the immediately preceding five years; that is, a world-price base was used as the starting point for negotiation. Under this system, therefore, intra-Comecon prices could and did depart substantially from relative prices on world markets. Although the possibility of breaking this tenuous link with world prices and developing an indigenous system of prices for the Comecon market had been discussed in the 1960s, the evolution of Comecon prices after 1971 went in the opposite direction. Far from a technical or academic matter, the question of prices underlay vital issues of the terms of, and hence gains from, intra-Comecon trade. In particular, relative to actual world prices, intra-Comecon prices in the early 1970s penalized raw materials exporters and benefited exporters of manufactures. After the oil price explosion of 1973, Comecon foreign trade prices swung still further away from world prices to the disadvantage of Comecon suppliers of raw 316

Appendix B materials, in particular the Soviet Union. In view of the extraregional opportunities opened up by the expansion of East-West trade, this yawning gap between Comecon and world prices could no longer be ignored. Hence in 1975, at Soviet instigation, the system of intra-Comecon pricing was reformed. The reform involved a substantial modification of existing procedures (known as the "Bucharest formula," from the location of the 9th Council Session in 1958 at which it was adopted), but not their abandonment. Under the modified Bucharest formula (which remained in effect as of 1987), prices were fixed every year and were based on a moving average of world prices for the preceding five years. The world-price base of the Bucharest formula was thus retained and still represented an average (although now moving) of adjusted world prices for the preceding five years. For 1975 alone, however, the average was for the preceding three years. Under these arrangements, intra-Comecon prices were more closely linked with world prices than before and throughout the remainder of the 1970s rose with world prices, although with a lag. Until the early 1980s, this new system benefited both the Soviet Union and the other Comecon countries since Soviet oil, priced with the lagged formula, was considerably cheaper than Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) oil, the price of which increased drastically in the 1970s. By 1983-84 this system turned to the Soviet Union's advantage because world market oil prices began to fall, whereas the lagged Soviet oil prices continued to rise. Exchange Rates and Currencies Basic features of the state trading systems of the Comecon countries are multiple exchange rates and comprehensive exchange controls that severely restrict the convertibility of members' currencies. These features are rooted in the planned character of the members' economies and their systems of administered prices. Currency inconvertibility in turn dictates bilateral balancing of accounts, which has been one of the basic objectives of intergovernmental trade agreements among members. An earlier system of bilateral clearing accounts was replaced on January 1, 1964, by accounts with the International Bank for Economic Cooperation, using the transferable ruble as the unit of account. Although the bank provided a centralized mechanism of trade accounting and swing credits to cover temporary imbalances, it could not establish a system of multilateral clearing given the centrally planned nature of the members' economies and the inconvertibility of their currencies. In 1987 the transferable ruble remained an artificial currency functioning as an accounting unit and was not a common instrument for 317

East Germany: A Country Study
multilateral settlement. For this reason, this currency continued to be termed "transferable" and not "convertible." The member countries recognize that the multiplicity and inconsistency of their administered exchange rates, the separation of their domestic prices from foreign prices, and the inconvertibility of their currencies are significant obstacles to multilateral trade and cooperation. As of early 1987, Comecon lacked not only a flexible means of payment but also a meaningful, standard unit of account. Both problems have vastly complicated the already complex multilateral projects and programs envisaged by the Comprehensive Program. The creation in 1971 of the International Investment Bank provided a mechanism for joint investment financing, but, like the International Bank for Economic Cooperation, this institution could not by itself resolve these fundamental monetary problems. Recognizing that money and credit should play a more active role in the Comecon system, the Comprehensive Program established a timetable for the improvement of monetary relations. According to the timetable, measures would be taken "to strengthen and extend" the functions of the "collective currency" (the transferable ruble), and the conditions would be studied and prepared "to make the transferable ruble convertible into national currencies and to make national currencies mutually convertible." To this end, steps would be taken to introduce "economically wellfounded and mutually coordinated" rates of exchange between members' currencies and "between 1976 and 1979" to prepare the groundwork for the introduction by 1980 of a "single rate of exchange for the national currency of every country." This timetable was not met. Only in Hungary were the conditions for convertibility gradually being introduced by reforms intended to link domestic prices more directly to world prices.

Cooperation in Planning
If countries are to gain from trade, that trade must be based on rational production structures reflecting resource scarcities. Since the early 1960s, official Comecon documents have stressed the need to promote among members' economies a more cost-effective pattern of specialization in production. This "international socialist division of labor" would, especially in the manufacturing sector, involve specialization within major branches of industry. In the absence of significant, decentralized allocation of resources within these economies, however, production specialization can be brought about only through the mechanism of the national plan and the investment decisions incorporated in it. In the absence at the regional level of supranational planning bodies, a rational pattern 318

Appendix B
of production specialization among members' economies requires coordination of national economic plans, a process that is not merely technical but also poses inescapable political problems. The coordination of national five-year economic plans is the most traditional form of cooperation among the members in the area of planning. Although the process of consultation underlying plan coordination remains essentially bilateral, Comecon organs are indirectly involved. The standing commissions draw up proposals for consideration by competent, national planning bodies; the Secretariat assembles information on the results of bilateral consultations; and the Council Committee for Cooperation in Planning (created by Comecon in 1971 at the same session at which the Comprehensive Program was adopted) reviews the progress of plan coordination by members. In principle, plan coordination covers all economic sectors. Effective and comprehensive plan coordination has, however, been significantly impeded by the continued momentum of earlier parallel development strategies and the desire of members to minimize the risks of mutual dependence (especially given the uncertainties of supply that are characteristic of the members' economies). Plan coordination in practice, therefore, remains for the most part limited to mutual adjustment, through bilateral consultation, of the foreign trade sectors of national five-year plans. Under the Comprehensive Program, there have been renewed efforts to extend plan coordination beyond foreign trade to the spheres of production, investment, science, and technology. Plan Coordination According to the 1971 Comprehensive Program, joint planningmultilateral or bilateral-is to be limited to "interested countries" and is "not to interfere with the autonomy of internal planning." Participating countries will, moreover, retain national ownership of the productive capacities and resources jointly planned. But "joint plans worked out by the member countries will be taken into account by them when drafting their long-term or five-year plans." The Comprehensive Program does not clearly assign responsibility for joint planning to any single agency. On the one hand, "coordination of work concerned with joint planning shall be carried out by the central planning bodies of Comecon member countries or their authorized representatives." On the other hand, "decisions on joint, multilateral planning of chosen branches and lines of production by interested countries shall be based on proposals by countries or Comecon agencies and shall be made by 319

East Germany: A Country Study
the Comecon Executive Committee, which also determines the Comecon agencies responsible for the organization of such work." Finally, mutual commitments resulting from joint planning and other aspects of cooperation shall be incorporated in agreements signed by the interested parties. It is extremely difficult to gauge the implementation of plan coordination or joint planning under the Comprehensive Program or to assess the activities of the diverse international economic organizations. There is no single, adequate measure of such cooperation. The only data on activities among the Comecon countries published by the annual Comecon yearbooks refer to merchandise trade, and these trade figures cannot be readily associated with cooperative measures taken under the Comprehensive Program. Occasional official figures are published, however, on the aggregate number of industrial specialization and co-production agreements signed by members.

Joint Projects
The clearest area of achievement under the Comprehensive Program has been the joint exploitation and development of natural resources for the economies of the member countries. Joint projects ease the investment burden on a single country when expansion of its production capacity is required to satisfy the needs of other members. Particular attention has been given to energy and fuels, forest industries, iron and steel, and various other metals and minerals. Most of this activity has been carried out in the Soviet Union, the great storehouse of natural resources within Comecon. Joint development projects are usually organized on a "compensation" basis, a form of investment "in kind." Participating members advance materials, equipment, and, more recently, manpower and are repaid through scheduled deliveries of the output resulting from, or distributed through, the new facility. Repayment includes a modest "fraternal" rate of interest, but the real financial return to the participating countries depends on the value of the output at the time of delivery. Deliveries at contract prices below world prices will provide an important extra return. No doubt the most important advantage from participation in joint projects, however, is the guarantee of long-term access to basic fuels and raw materials in a world of increasing uncertainty of supply of such products.

The Concerted Plan
The multilateral development projects concluded under the Comprehensive Program formed the backbone of Comecon's Concerted 320

Appendix B
Plan for the 1976-80 period. The program.allotted 9 billion rubles (nearly US$12 billion at the official 1975 exchange rate of US$1.30 per ruble) for joint investments. The Orenburg project was the largest project under the Comprehensive Program. It was undertaken by all East European Comecon countries and the Soviet Union at an estimated cost ranging from the equivalent of US$5 billion to US$6 billion, or about half of the cost of all Comecon projects under the Concerted Plan. It consists of a natural gas complex at Orenburg in western Siberia and the 2,677-kilometer Union (Soiuz) natural-gas pipeline, completed in 1978, which links the complex to the western border of the Soviet Union. Construction of a pulp mill in Ust' Him (in central Siberia) was the other major project under this program. These two projects differed from other joint Comecon investments projects in that they were jointly planned and jointly built in the host country (the Soviet Union in both cases). Although the other projects were jointly planned, each country was responsible only for construction within its own borders. Western technology, equipment, and financing played a considerable role. The Soviet Union owns the Orenburg complex and the Ust' Ilimn installation and is repaying its East European co-investors at a 2 percent interest rate with an agreed-upon amount of natural gas and wood pulp. The early 1980s were characterized by more bilateral investment specialization but on a much smaller scale than required for the Orenburg and Ust' Dim projects. In these latter projects, Eastern Europe provided machinery and equipment for Soviet multilateral resource development. Work also progressed on the previously mentioned Long-Term Target Programs for Cooperation (see The Comprehensive Program for Socialist Economic Integration, 1971, this Appendix). Cooperation in Science and Technology To supplement national efforts to upgrade indigenous technology, the 1971 Comprehensive Program emphasizes cooperation in science and technology. The development of new technology is envisaged as a major object of cooperation; collaboration in resource development and specialization in production are to be facilitated by transfers of technology between members. The 1971 Comecon session, which adopted the Comprehensive Program, decided to establish the Special Council Committee for Scientific and Technical Cooperation to ensure the organization and fulfillment of the provisions of the program in this area. Jointly planned and coordinated research programs have extended to the creation of joint research institutes and centers. In terms of number of patents, 321

East Germany: A Country Study
documents, and other scientific and technical information exchanges, the available data indicate that the Soviet Union has been the dominant source of technology within Comecon. It has, on the whole, provided more technology to its East European partners than it has received from them, although the balance varies considerably from country to country depending upon relative levels of industrial development. Soviet science also forms the base for several high-technology programs for regional specialization and cooperation, such as nuclear power and computers. The Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress up to the Year 2000, adopted in December 1985, has boosted cooperation in science and technology. The program sets forth 93 projects and 800 subprojects within 5 broad areas of development (see Early Years, this Appendix). A Soviet ministry will supervise each of the areas and will be responsible for the technical level and quality of output, compliance with research and production schedules, costs, and sales. Each project will be headed by a Soviet organization, which will award contracts to other Comecon-member organizations. The Soviet project heads, who will not be responsible to domestic planners, will have extensive executive powers of their own and will closely supervise all activities. The program represents a fundamentally new approach to multilateral collaboration and a first step toward investing Comecon with some supranational authority. Labor Resources Just as the 1971 Comprehensive Program stimulated investment flows and technology transfers among members, it also increased intra-Comecon flows of another important factor of production: labor. Most of the transfers occurred in connection with joint resource development projects, e.g., Bulgarian workers aiding in the exploitation of Siberian forest resources, Polish workers assisting in the construction of the Union pipeline, or Vietnamese workers helping on the Friendship pipeline in the Soviet Union. Labor was also transferred in response to labor imbalances in member countries. Hungarian workers, for example, were sent to work in East Germany under a bilateral agreement between the two countries. Such transfers, however, are restricted by the universal scarcity of labor that has emerged with the industrialization of the less developed Comecon countries. Moreover the presence of foreign workers has raised practical and ideological issues in socialist planned economies. It should be noted, finally, that cooperation in the area of labor has been by no means limited to planned exchanges of manpower. Comecon countries have exchanged 322

Appendix B
information on experience in manpower planning and employment and wage policies through Comecon organs and activities.

Power Configurations Within Comecon
The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe Since Comecon's creation in 1949, the relationship between the Soviet Union and the six East European countries has generally remained the same. The Soviet Union has provided fuel, nonfood raw materials, and semimanufactures (hard goods) to Eastern Europe, which in turn has supplied the Soviet Union with finished machinery and industrial consumer goods (soft goods). This kind of economic relationship stemmed from a genuine need by the parties in the 1950s. Eastern Europe has poor energy and mineral resources, a problem exacerbated by the low energy efficiency of East European industry. As of mid-1985, factories in Eastern Europe still used 40 percent more fuel than those in the West. As a result of these factors, Eastern European countries have always relied heavily on the Soviet Union for oil. For its part, in the 1950s Eastern Europe supplied the Soviet Union with those goods otherwise unavailable because of Western embargoes. Thus, from the early 1950s to the early 1970s, during the time when there was no world shortage of energy and raw materials, the Soviet Union inexpensively supplied its East European clients with hard goods in exchange for finished machinery and equipment. In addition, Soviet economic policies bought political and military support. During these years, the Soviet Union could be assured of relative political tranquillity within the bloc, obedience in international strategy as laid down by the Soviet Union, and military support of Soviet aims. By the 1980s, both parties were accustomed to this arrangement. The Soviet Union was particularly happy with the arrangement since it still could expand its energy and raw materials complex quickly and relatively cheaply. In the 1970s, the terms of trade for the Soviet Union had improved. The OPEC price for oil had soared, which put the Soviet Union in a very advantageous position because of its bountiful supply of oil. The soaring price increased the opportunity cost (see Glossary) of providing Eastern Europe with oil at prices lower than those established by OPEC. In addition, extraction and transportation costs for these goods, most of which originated in Siberia, were also rising. In response to the market, the Soviet Union decreased its exports to its East European partners and increased its purchases of soft goods from these countries. This policy forced the East European countries to turn to the West for hard goods 323

East Germany: A Country Study
despite the fact that they had fewer goods to export in return for hard currency. Any hard goods supplied to Eastern Europe by the Soviet Union were sold essentially at a discount price because Comecon prices lagged behind and were lower that those of the world market. Developments in the 1980s made this situation even more complex. The 1983-84 decline in international oil prices left the Soviets with large holdings of oil that, because of the lag in Comecon prices, were still increasing in price. The "nonmarket gains from preferential trade" became quite expensive for the Soviets. East European profits from the implicit subsidization were almost US$102 billion (in 1981 dollars, using an exchange rate of 1.81 dollars to the ruble) between 1972 and 1981.

Mongolia, Cuba, and Vietnam
Soviet-initiated Comecon support for the Council's three leastdeveloped members-Cuba, Mongolia, and Vietnam-has clearly benefited them, but the burden on the six East European Comecon members has been most unwelcome. Comecon is structured in such a way that the more economically developed members provide support for the less developed members in their major economic sectors. Initially, when Mongolia joined Comecon in 1962, there was no great added burden. The population of Mongolia was relatively small (1 million), and the country's subsidies came primarily from the Soviet Union. The addition of Cuba (9 million people) in 1972 and Vietnam (40 million people) in 1978, however, quickly escalated the burden. As of early 1987, three-fourths of Comecon's overseas economic aid went to Cuba, Mongolia, and Vietnam: almost US$4 billion went to Cuba, US$2 billion to Vietnam (half in military aid), and US$1 billion to Mongolia. Although the Soviets carry most of the burden, since 1976 the East Europeans have been persuaded to take part in projects to boost the developing countries' economies. East European countries import Cuban nickel and Mongolian molybdenum and copper; they are also pressed to buy staples, such as Cuban sugar (80 percent of Cuba's exports), at inflated prices. Eastern Europe also contributes to the International Investment Bank, from which the underdeveloped three can acquire loans at lower interest rates (0.5 to 2 percent) than the East Europeans themselves (2 to 5 percent). In addition, the Soviets sell their fuel and raw materials to Cuba, Vietnam, and Mongolia for less than it is sold to the six East European members. Hence the latter have become competitors for the slowly diminishing Soviet resources. As of 1987, the only benefit accruing to the East Europeans was the services 324

Appendix B
provided by Vietnamese guest workers. However, the majority of the Vietnamese have worked primarily on the Friendship pipeline in the Soviet Union. Undeniably, Comecon has been investing heavily in Mongolia, Cuba, and Vietnam; and the three countries have benefited substantially from these resources. In 1984 increases in capital investments within Comecon were the highest for Vietnam and Cuba (26.9 percent for Vietnam and 14 percent for Cuba, compared with 3.3 percent and less for the others, except Poland and Romania). Increased investments in Mongolia lagged behind Poland and Romania but were nevertheless substantial (5.8 percent). In 1984 the economies of the three developing countries registered the fastest industrial growth of all the Comecon members (see table B, this Appendix). Given their locations, Comecon membership for Mongolia, Cuba, and Vietnam appears principally to serve Soviet foreign policy interests. The Soviet Union contributes the most to the development to the three poorer Comecon members, and it also reaps most of the benefits. The Soviet Union imports most of Cuba's sugar and nickel and all of Mongolia's copper and molybdenum (widely used in the construction of aircraft, automobiles, machine tools, gas turbines, and in the field of electronics). Cuba has provided bases for the Soviet navy and military support to Soviet allies in Africa. Vietnam makes its naval and air bases, as well as some 100,000 guest workers, available to the Soviets. At the June 1984 Comecon economic summit and at subsequent Council sessions, the policy of equalizing the levels of economic development between Comecon member countries was repeatedly stressed. At the November 1986 Comecon session in Bucharest, the East European members "outlined measures to further improve cooperation with Vietnam, Cuba, and Mongolia with a view to developing the main sectors of these countries' national economies." Moreover, the Soviets have repeatedly stressed their earnestness in "normalizing the situation in the Asia-Pacific region and in including that region in the overall process of creating a universal system of international security."

Support for Developing Countries
Comecon provided economic and technical support to 34 developing countries in 1960, 62 countries in 1970, and over 100 countries in 1985. As of 1987, Comecon had assisted in the construction or preparation of over 4,000 projects (mostly industrial) in Asia, Latin America, and Africa (see fig. C, this Appendix). A monetary figure for this assistance is difficult to estimate, although a June 325

East Germany: A Country Study Table B. Change in Industrial Growth Within Comecon Member Countriesfrom 1983 to 1984
(inpercentage) Country Change

Bulgaria . .......................... 4.3 Cuba .............................. 12.0 Czechoslovakia . ..................... 3.9 East Germany ....................... 4.2 Hungary ............................ 2.8 M ongolia ........................... 8.3 Poland ..............................6.0 Romania ............................7.0 Soviet Union ........................ 4.2 V ietnam . .......................... 7.2
[Moscow], 1985, 62. SuuiLc Basud on iiifornation from SEV Voprosy i otvely

1986 Czechoslovak source valued the exchange between Comecon and developing countries at 34 billion rubles per year (US$48.4 at the official June 1986 exchange rate of US$1.42 per ruble). The precise nature of this aid was unclear, and Western observers believe the data to be inflated. From the 1960s to the mid-1980s, Comecon has sought to encourage the development of industry, energy, transportation, mineral resources, and agriculture of Third World countries. Comecon countries have also provided technical and economic training for personnel in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. When Comecon initially lent support to developing countries, it generally concentrated on developing those products that would support the domestic economies of the Third World, including replacements for imports. In the 1970s and 1980s, assistance from Comecon has been directed toward export-oriented industries. Third World countries have paid for this support with products produced by the project for which Comecon rendered help. This policy has provided Comecon with a stable source of necessary deliveries in addition to political influence in these strategically important areas.

Trends and Prospects
Comecon has served for more than three decades as a framework for cooperation among the planned economies of the Soviet Union, its allies in Eastern Europe, and, now, Soviet allies in the 326

Appendix B


O *LA,


•L Power Petrochemical and coal-based' chemical industry J~ metallurgy A Machinery industry Food and light industryArclre Construction industry


i ii,


Transportation and telecommunications


Educational acilities • Other


z > =



Source: Based on information from Figylo [Budapest), October 16, 1986.

Figure C. Most Important Facilities Built in Africa by Comecon Countries, December 31, 1985

Third World. Over the years, the Comecon system has grown steadily in scope and experience. The organization now encompasses a complex and sophisticated set of institutions that represent a striking advance over the capabilities of the organization in the early 1960s. This institutional evolution has reflected changing and expanding goals. Initial, modest objectives of "exchanging experience" and providing "technical assistance" and other forms of "mutual 327

East Germany: A Country Study
aid" have been extended to the development of an integrated set of economies based on a coordinated international pattern of production and investment. These ambitious goals are pursued through a broad spectrum of cooperative measures extending from monetary to technological relations. At the same time, the extraregional goals of the organization have expanded; other countries, both geographically distant and systemically different, are being encouraged to participate in Comecon activities. Parallel efforts have sought to develop Comecon as a mechanism through which to coordinate the foreign economic policies of the members as well as their actual relations with nonmember countries and such organizations as the EEC and the United Nations. Asymmetries of size and differences in levels of development among Comecon members have deeply affected the institutional character and evolution of the organization. The overwhelming dominance of the Soviet economy has necessarily meant that the bulk of intra-Comecon relations takes the form of bilateral relations between the Soviet Union and the smaller members of Comecon. These asymmetries have served in other ways to impede progress toward multilateral trade and cooperation within the organization. The sensitivities of the smaller states have dictated that the sovereign equality of members remains a basic tenet of the organization. Despite Soviet political and economic dominance, sovereign equality has constituted a very real obstacle to the acquisition of supranational powers by Comecon organs. Nevertheless, the 1985 Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress up to the Year 2000 took steps to instill some organizations with supranational authority. The planned nature of the members' economies and the lack of effective market-price mechanisms to facilitate integration have further hindered progress toward Comecon goals. Without the automatic workings of market forces, progress must depend upon conscious acts of policy. This tends to politicize the processes of integration to a greater degree than is the case in market economies. By 1987 Comecon's Comprehensive Program, adopted in 1971, had undergone considerable change. Multilateral planning faded into traditional bilateral cooperation, and the Bucharest formula for prices assumed a revised form. The 1985 Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Progress, or, as some Western analysts call it, the "Gorbachev Charter," was Comecon's new blueprint for taking a firm grip on its future. Experience in the early 1980s showed that turning to the West and Japan for technological advancement put Comecon in a very dangerous position 328

Appendix B because it pulled the East European members further away from the Soviet Union and threatened to leave the entire organization at the mercy of the West. The purpose of the 1985 program was to offset centrifugal forces and reduce Comecon's vulnerability to "technological blackmail" through broadened mutual cooperation, increased efficiency of cooperation, and improved quality of output. The success of the 1985 program will be closely tied to the success of Gorbachev's changes in the Soviet economy. Major projects for the 1986-90 period include a 5,600-kilometer natural-gas pipeline from the Yamburg Peninsula (in northern Siberia) to Eastern Europe; the Krivoy Rog (in the Ukraine), a mining and enrichment combine that will produce 13 million tons of iron ore annually; the annual production and exchange of 500 million rubles' worth of equipment for nuclear power plants; and joint projects for extracting coal in Poland, magnesite in Czechoslovakia, nickel in Cuba, and nonferrous metals in Mongolia. Recalling the failure record of previous Comecon projects (for example, the disappointing Riad computer project, which in its attempt to standardize components and software is producing unreliable and costly products that fellow members refuse to buy), some Western analysts question whether the 1985 program will accomplish all that it has set out to do.

Although the selection is still rather sparse, several Englishlanguage works on Comecon appeared in the early 1980s. Socialist Economic Integration by Jozef van Brabant discusses in great detail the mechanisms and operations of socialist economic integration in general and Comecon in particular. It is perhaps the most comprehensive English-language work on the subject. Several chapters in East European Integration and East- West Trade, edited by Paul Marer and John Michael Montias, are particularly helpful in analyzing the mechanisms of Comecon and comparing it with the EEC. Analysis of Comecon's operations and development in the modern economic and political arena is provided in Marer's "The Political Economy of Soviet Relations with Eastern Europe" in Soviet Policy in Eastern Europe. The best sources for up-to-date political and economic analysis are the Radio Free Europe background reports. Articles by Vladimir Sobell, in particular, give good insight into the 1985 Comprehensive Program for Scientific and Technical Development. Russian-language sources provide useful information on Comecon procedures and structure in addition to insight into the Soviet 329

East Germany: A Country Study and East European view of Comecon's goals and shortcomings. Articles in this vein can be found in Voprosy ekonomiki and the "Ekonomika" series published in Moscow by Znanie. Translations of selected articles from these publications can be found in the Joint Publications Research Service's USSR Report on Economic Affairs. The Comecon Secretariat publishes a bimonthly bulletin (Ekonomicheskoe sotrudnichesivo stran-chlenov SEV), which has a table of contents and a summary in English; an annual Statisticheskii ezhegodnik stran-chlenov SEV; and various handbooks. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Appendix C The Warsaw Pact
IN APRIL 1985, the general secretaries of the communist and workers' parties of the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, the German Democratic Republic (East Germany), Hungary, Poland, and Romania gathered in Warsaw to sign a protocol extending the effective term of the 1955 Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance, which originally established the Soviet-led political-military alliance in Eastern Europe. Their action ensured that the Warsaw Pact, as it is commonly known, will remain part of the international political and military landscape well into the future. The thirtieth anniversary of the Warsaw Pact and its renewal make a review of its origins and evolution particularly appropriate. The Warsaw Pact alliance of the East European socialist states is the nominal counterweight to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) on the European continent (see fig. A, this Appendix). Unlike NATO, founded in 1949, however, the Warsaw Pact does not have an independent organizational structure but functions as part of the Soviet Ministry of Defense. In fact, throughout the more than thirty years since it was founded, the Warsaw Pact has served as one of the Soviet Union's primary mechanisms for keeping its East European allies under its political and military control. The Soviet Union has used the Warsaw Pact to erect a facade of collective decision making and action around the reality of its political domination and military intervention in the internal affairs of its allies. At the same time, the Soviet Union also has used the Warsaw Pact to develop East European socialist armies and harness them to its military strategy. Since its inception, the Warsaw Pact has reflected the changing pattern of Soviet-East European relations and manifested problems that affect all alliances. The Warsaw Pact has evolved into something other than the mechanism of control the Soviet Union originally intended it to be, and it has become increasingly less dominated by the Soviet Union since the 1960s. The organizational structure of the Warsaw Pact has grown and has provided a forum for greater intra-alliance debate, bargaining, and conflict between the Soviet Union and its allies over the issues of national independence, policy autonomy, and East European participation in alliance decision making. While the Warsaw Pact retains its internal 331

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function in Soviet-East European relations, its non-Soviet members have also developed sufficient military capabilities to become useful adjuncts of Soviet power against NATO in Europe. 332

Appendix C

The Soviet Alliance System, 1943-55
Long before the establishment of the Warsaw Pact in 1955, the Soviet Union had molded the East European states into an alliance serving its security interests. Vhile liberating Eastern Europe from Nazi Germany in World War II, the Red Army established political and military control over that region. The Soviet Union's size, economic weight, and sheer military power made its domination inevitable in this part of Europe, which historically had been dominated by great powers. The Soviet Union inteixded to use Eastern Europe as a buffer zone for the forward defense of its western borders and to keep threatening ideological influences at bay. Continued control of Eastern Europe became second only to defense of the homeland in the hierarchy of Soviet security priorities. The Soviet Union ensured its control of the region by turning the East European countries into subjugated allies.

The Organization of East European National Units, 1943-45
During World War II, the Soviet Union began to build what Soviet sources refer to as history's first coalition of a progressive type when it organized or reorganized the armies of Eastern Europe to fight with the Red Army against the German Wehrmacht. The command and control procedures established in this military alliance would serve as the model on which the Soviet Union would build the Warsaw Pact after 1955. During the last years of the war, Soviet commanders and officers gained valuable experience in directing multinational forces that would later be put to use in the Warsaw Pact. The units formed between 1943 and 1945 also provided the foundation on which the Soviet Union could build postwar East European national armies. The Red Army began to form, train, and arm Polish and Czechoslovak national units on Soviet territory in 1943. These units fought with the Red Army as it carried its offensive westward into German-occupied Poland and Czechoslovakia and then into Germany itself. By contrast, Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania were wartime enemies of the Soviet Union. Although ruled by ostensibly fascist regimes, these countries allied with Nazi Germany mainly to recover territories lost through the peace settlements of World War I or seized by the Soviet Union under the terms of the 1939 Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact. However. by 1943 the Red Army had destroyed the Bulgarian, Hungarian, and Romanian forces fighting alongside the Wehrmacht. In 1944 it occupied Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania, and shortly thereafter it began the process of transforming the remnants of their armies into allied 333

East Germany: A Country Study units that could re-enter the war on the side of the Soviet Union. These allied units represented a mix of East European nationals fleeing Nazi occupation, deportees from Soviet-occupied areas, and enemy prisoners of war. Red Army political officers organized extensive indoctrination programs in the allied units under Soviet control and purged any politically suspect personnel. In all, the Soviet Union formed and armed more than 29 divisions and 37 brigades or regiments, which included more than 500,000 East European troops. The allied national formations were directly subordinate to the headquarters of the Soviet Supreme High Command and its executive body, the Soviet General Staff. Although the Soviet Union directly commanded all allied units, the Supreme High Command included one representative from each of the East European forces. Lacking authority, these representatives simply relayed directives from the Supreme High Command and General Staff to the commanders of East European units. While all national units had so-called Soviet advisers, some Red Army officers openly discharged command and staff responsibilities in the East European armies. Even when commanded by East European officers, non-Soviet contingents participated in operat )ns against the Wehrmacht only as part of Soviet fronts. The Development of Socialist Armies in Eastern Europe, 1945-55 At the end of World War II, the Red Army occupied Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Poland, and eastern Germany, and Soviet front commanders headed the Allied Control Commission in each of these occupied countries. The Soviet Union gave its most important occupation forces a garrison status when it established the Northern Group of Forces (NGF) in 1947 and the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany (GSFG) in 1949. By 1949 the Soviet Union had concluded twenty-year bilateral treaties on friendship, cooperation, and mutual assistance with Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, and Romania. These treaties prohibited the East European regimes from entering into relations with states hostile to the Soviet Union, officially made these countries Soviet allies, and granted the Soviet Union rights to a continued military presence on their territory. The continued presence of R r-d Army forces guaranteed Soviet control of these countries. By contrast, the Soviet Union did not occupy either Albania or Yugoslavia during or after the war, and both countries remained outside direct Soviet control. The circumstances of Soviet occupation facilitated the installation of communist-dominated governments called "people's democracies" in Eastern Europe. The indoctrinated East European 334

Appendix C
troops that had fought with the Red Army to liberate their countries from Nazi occupation became politically useful to the Soviet Union as it established socialist states in Eastern Europe. The East European satellite regimes depended entirely on Soviet military power-and the continued deployment of 1 million Red Army soldiers-to stay in power. In return, the new East European political and military elites were obliged to respect Soviet political and security interests in the region. While transforming the East European governments, the Soviet Union also continued the process of strengthening its political control over the East European armed forces and reshaping them along Soviet military lines after World War II. In Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union instituted a system of local communist party controls over the military based on the Soviet model. The East European communist parties thoroughly penetrated the East European military establishments to ensure their loyalty to the newly established political order. At the same time, the Soviet Union built these armies up to support local security and police forces against domestic disorder or other threats to communist party rule. Reliable East European military establishments could be counted on to support communist rule and, consequently, ensure continued Soviet control of Eastern Europe. In fact, in the late 1940s and the 19 50s the Soviet Union was more concerned about cultivating and monitoring political loyalty in its East European military allies than increasing their utility as combat forces. The postwar military establishments in Eastern Europe consisted of rival communist and noncommunist wartime antifascist resistance movements, national units established on Soviet territory during the war, prewar national military commands, and various other armed forces elements that spent the war years in exile or fighting in the West. Using the weight of the Red Army and its occupation authority, the Soviet Union purged or co-opted the noncommunist nationalists in the East European armies and thereby eliminated a group likely to oppose their restructuring along Soviet lines. In the case of communist forces, the Soviet Union trusted and promoted personnel who had served in the national units formed on its territory over native communists who had fought in the East European underground organizations independent of Soviet control. After 1948 the East European armies adopted regular political education programs. This Soviet-style indoctrination was aimed primarily at raising communist party membership within the officer corps and building a military leadership cadre loyal to the socialist system and the national communist regime. Unquestionable political loyalty was more important than professional competence for 335

East Germany. A Country Study advancement in the military hierarchy. Appropriate class origin became the principal criterion for admission to the East European officer corps and military schools. The Soviet Union and national communist party regimes transformed the East European military establishments into a vehicle of upward mobility for the working class and peasantry, who were unaccustomed to this kind of opportunity. Many of the officers in the new East European armed forces supported the new regimes because their newly acquired professional and social status hinged on the continuance of communist party rule. The Soviet Union assigned trusted national communist party leaders to the most important EaSt European military command positions despite their lack of military qualifications. The East European ministries of defense established political departments on the model of the Main Political Directorate of the Soviet Army and Navy. Throughout the 1950s, prewar East European communists served as political officers, sharing command prerogatives with professional officers and evaluating their loyalty to the communist regime and compliance with its directives. Heavily armed paramilitary forces under the control of the East European internal security networks became powerful rivals for the national armies and checked their potentially great influence within the political system. The Soviet foreign intelligence apparatus also closely monitored the allied national military establishments. Despite the great diversity of the new Soviet allies in terms of military history and traditions, the Sovietization of the East European national armies, which occurred between 1945 and the early 1950s, followed a consistent pattern in every case. The Soviet Union forced its East European allies to emulate Soviet Army ranks and uniforms and abandon all distinctive national military customs and practices; these allied armies used all Soviet-made weapons and equipment. The Soviet Union also insisted on the adoption of Soviet Army organization and tactics within the East European armies. Following the precedent established during World War II, the Soviet Union assigned Soviet officers to duty at all levels of the East European national command structures, from the general (main) staffs down to the regimental level, as its primary means of military control. Although officially termed advisers, these Soviet Army officers generally made the most important decisions within the East European armies. Direct Soviet control over the national military establishments was most complete in strategically important Poland. Soviet officers held approximately half the command positions in the postwar Polish Army despite the fact that few spoke Polish. Soviet officers and instructors staffed the national military 336

Appendix C
academies, and the study of Russian became mandatory for East European army officers. The Soviet Union also accepted many of the most promising and eager East European officers into Soviet mid-career military institutions and academies for the advanced study essential to their promotion within the national armed forces command structures. Despite Soviet efforts to develop political and military instruments of control and the continued presence of Soviet Army occupation forces, the Soviet Union still faced resistance to its domination of Eastern Europe. The Soviet troops in the GSFG acted unilaterally when the East German Garrisoned People's Police refused to crush the June 1953 workers' uprising in East Berlin. This action set a precedent for the Soviet use of force to retain control of its buffer zone in Eastern Europe.

The Warsaw Pact, 1955-70
East-West Diplomacy and the Formation of the Warsaw Pact In May 1955, the Soviet Union institutionalized its East European alliance system when it gathered together representatives from Albania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, and Romania in Warsaw to sign the multilateral Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance, which was identical to their existing bilateral treaties with the Soviet Union. Initially, the Soviets claimed that the Warsaw Pact was a direct response to the inclusion of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) in NATO in 1955. The formation of a legally defined, multilateral alliance organization also reinforced the Soviet Union's claim to great power status as the leader of the world socialist system, enhanced its prestige, and legitimized its presence and influence in Eastern Europe. However, as events inside the Soviet alliance developed, this initial external impetus for the formation of the Warsaw Pact lost its importance, and the Soviet Union found a formal alliance useful for other purposes. The Soviet Union created a structure for dealing with its East European allies more efficiently when it superimposed the multilateral Warsaw Pact on their existing bilateral treaty ties. In the early 1950s, the United States and its Western allies carried out an agreement to re-arm West Germany and integrate it into NATO. This development threatened a vital Soviet foreign policy objective: the Soviet Union was intent on preventing the resurgence of a powerful German nation and particularly one allied with the Western powers. In an effort to derail the admission of West Germany to NATO, the Soviet representative at the 1954 337

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Four-Power Foreign Ministers Conference in Berlin, Viacheslav Molotov, went so far as to propose the possibility of holding simultaneous elections in both German states that might lead to a re-unified, though neutral and unarmed, Germany. At the same time, the Soviet Union also proposed to the Western powers a general treaty on collective security in Europe and the dismantling of existing military blocs (meaning NATO). When this tactic failed and West Germany joined NATO on May 5, 1955, the Soviet Union declared that West Germany's membership in the Western alliance created a special threat to Soviet interests. The Soviet Union also declared that this development made its existing network of bilateral treaties an inadequate security guarantee and forced the East European socialist countries to "combine efforts in a strong political and military alliance." On May 14, 1955, the Soviet Union and its East European allies signed the Warsaw Pact. While the Soviets had avoided formalizing their alliance to keep the onus of dividing Europe into opposing blocs on the West, the admission into NATO of the European state with the greatest potential military power forced the Soviet Union to take NATO into account for the first time. The Soviet Union also used West Germany's membership in NATO for propaganda purposes. The Soviets evoked the threat of a re-armed, "revanchist" West Germany seeking to reverse its defeat in World War IIto remind the East European countries of their debt to the Soviet Union for their liberation, their need for Soviet protection against a recent enemy, and their corresponding duty to respect Soviet security interests and join the Warsaw Pact. The Soviet Union had important reasons for institutionalizing the informal alliance system established through its bilateral treaties with the East European countries, concluded before the 1949 formation of NATO. As a formal organization, the Warsaw Pact provided the Soviet Union an official counterweight to NATO in East-West diplomacy. The Warsaw Pact gave the Soviet Union an equal status with the United States as the leader of an alliance of ostensibly independent nations supporting its foreign policy initiatives in the international arena. The multilateral Warsaw Pact was an improvement over strictly bilateral ties as a mechanism for transmitting Soviet defense and foreign policy directives to the East European allies. The Warsaw Pact also helped to legitimize the presence of Soviet troops-and overwhelming Soviet influencein Eastern Europe. The 1955 Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance between the Soviet Union and its East European allies, which established the Warsaw Pact, stated that relations among 338

Appendix C
the signatories were based on total equality, mutual noninterference in internal affairs, and respect for national sovereignty and independence. It declared that the Warsaw Pact's function was collective self-defense of the member states against external aggression, as provided for in Article 51 of the United Nations Charter. The terms of the alliance specified the Political Consultative Committee (PCC) as the highest alliance organ. The founding document formed the Joint Command to organize the actual defense of the Warsaw Pact member states, declared that the national deputy ministers of defense would act as the deputies of the Warsaw Pact commander in chief, and established the Joint Staff, which included the representatives of the general (main) staffs of all its member states. The treaty set the Warsaw Pact's duration at twenty years with an automatic ten-year extension, provided that none of the member states renounced it before its expiration. The treaty also included a standing offer to disband simultaneously with other military alliances, i.e., NATO, contingent on East-West agreement about a general treaty on collective security in Europe. This provision indicated that the Soviet Union either did not expect that such an accord could be negotiated or did not consider its new multilateral alliance structure very important.

Early Organizational Structure and Activities Until the early 1960s, the Soviet Union used the Warsaw Pact more as a tool in East-West diplomacy than as a functioning political-military alliance. Under the leadership of General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet Union sought to project a more flexible and less threatening image abroad and, toward this end, used the alliance's PCC to publicize its foreign policy initiatives and peace offensives, including frequent calls for the formation of an all-European collective security system to replace the continent's existing military alliances. The main result of Western acceptance of these disingenuous Soviet proposals would have been the removal of American troops from Europe, the weakening of ties among the Western states, and increasingly effective Soviet pressure on Western Europe. The Soviet Union also used the PCC to propose a nonaggression pact between NATO and the Warsaw Pact and the establishment of a nuclear-free zone in Central Europe. In the first few years after 1955, little of the Warsaw Pact's activity was directed at building a multilateral military alliance. The Soviet Union concentrated primarily on making the Warsaw Pact a reliable instrument for controlling the East European allies. In fact, the putatively supranational military agencies of the Warsaw Pact were completely subordinate to a national agency of the Soviet Union. 339

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The Soviet General Staff in Moscow housed the alliance's Joint Command and Joint Staff and, through these organs, controlled the entire military apparatus of the Warsaw Pact as well as the allied armies. Although the highest ranking officers of the alliance were supposed to be selected through the mutual agreement of its member states, the Soviets unilaterally appointed a first deputy Soviet minister of defense and first deputy chief of the Soviet General Staff to serve as Warsaw Pact commander in chief and chief of staff, respectively. While these two Soviet officers ranked below the Soviet minister of defense, they still outranked the ministers of defense in the non-Soviet Warsaw Pact (NSWP) countries. The Soviet General Staff also posted senior colonel generals as resident representatives of the Warsaw Pact commander in chief in all East European capitals. Serving with the "agreement of their host countries," these successors to the wartime and postwar Soviet advisers in the allied armies equaled the East European ministers of defense in rank and provided a point of contact for the commander in chief, Joint Command, and Soviet General Staff inside the national military establishments. They directed and monitored the military training and political indoctrination programs of the national armies to synchronize their development with the Soviet Army. The strict Soviet control of the Warsaw Pact's high military command positions, established at this early stage, clearly indicated the subordination of the East European allies to the Soviet Union. In 1956 the Warsaw Pact member states admitted East Germany to the Joint Command and sanctioned the transformation of its Garrisoned People's Police into a full-fledged army. But the Soviet Union took no steps to integrate the allied armies into a multinational force. The Soviet Union organized only one joint Warsaw Pact military exercise and made no attempt to make the alliance functional before 1961 except through the incorporation of East European territory into the Soviet national air defense structure.

De-Stalinization and National Communism
In his 1956 secret speech at the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, General Secretary Khrushchev denounced the arbitrariness, excesses, and terror of the Joseph Stalin era. Khrushchev sought to achieve greater legitimacy for communist party rule on the basis of the party's ability to meet the material needs of the Soviet population. His de-Stalinization campaign quickly influenced developments in Eastern Europe. Khrushchev accepted the replacement of Stalinist Polish and Hungarian leaders with newly rehabilitated communist party figures, who were able to generate genuine popular support for their regimes by 340

Appendix C
molding the socialist system to the specific historical, political, and economic conditions in their countries. Pursuing his more sophisticated approach in international affairs, Khrushchev sought to turn Soviet-controlled East European satellites into at least semisovereign countries and to make Soviet domination of the Warsaw Pact less obvious. The Warsaw Pact's formal structure served Khrushchev's purpose well, providing a facade of genuine consultation and ofjoint defense and foreign-policy decision making by the Soviet Union and the East European countries. De-Stalinization in the Soviet Union made a superficial renationalization of the East European military establishments possible. The Soviet Union allowed the East European armies to restore their distinctive national practices and to re-emphasize professional military opinions over political considerations in most areas. Military training supplanted political indoctrination as the primary task of the East European military establishments. Most important, the Soviet Ministry of Defense recalled many Soviet Army officers and advisers from their positions within the East European armies. Although the Soviet Union still remained in control of its alliance system, these changes in the Warsaw Pact and the NSWP armies removed some of the most objectionable features of Sovietization. In October 1956, the Polish and Hungarian communist parties lost control of the de-Stalinization process in their countries. The ensuing crises threatened the integrity of the entire Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe. Although Khrushchev reacted quickly to rein in the East European allies and thwart this challenge to Soviet interests, his response in these two cases led to a significant change in the role of the Warsaw Pact as ar element of Soviet security. The "Polish October" The October 1956, workers' riots in Poland defined the boundaries of national communism acceptable to the Soviet Union. The Polish United Workers Party found that the grievances that inspired the riots could be ameliorated without presenting a challenge to its monopoly on political power or its strict adherence to Soviet foreign policy and security interests. At first, when the Polish Army and police forces refused to suppress rioting workers, the Soviet Union prepared its forces in East Germany and Poland for an intervention to restore order in the country. However, Poland's new communist party leader, Wladyslaw Gomulka, and the Polish Army's top commanders indicated to Khrushchev and the other Soviet leaders that any Soviet intervention in the internal affairs of Poland would meet united, massive resistance. While insisting on Poland's right to exercise greater autonomy in domestic matters, 341

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Gomulka also pointed out that the Polish United Workers Party remained in firm control of the country and expressed his intention to continue to accept Soviet direction in external affairs. Gomulka even denounced the simultaneous revolution in Hungary and Hungary's attempt to leave the Warsaw Pact, which nearly ruptured the Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe. Gomulka's position protected the Soviet Union's most vital interests and enabled Poland to reach a compromise with the Soviet leadership to defuse the crisis. Faced with Polish resistance to a possible invasion, the Soviet Union established its minimum requirements for the East European allies: upholding the leading role of the communist party in society and remaining a member of the Warsaw Pact. These two conditions ensured that Eastern Europe would remain a buffer zone for the Soviet Union. The HungarianRevolution By contrast, the full-scale revolution in Hungary, which began in late October with public demonstrations in support of the rioting Polish workers, openly flouted these Soviet stipulations. An initial domestic liberalization acceptable to the Soviet Union quickly focused on nonnegotiable issues like the communist party's exclusive hold on political power and genuine national independence. With overwhelming support from the Hungarian public, the new communist party leader, Imr6 Nagy, instituted multiparty elections. More important, Nagy withdrew Hungary from the Warsaw Pact and ended Hungary's alliance with the Soviet Union. The Soviet Army invaded with 200,000 troops, crushed the Hungarian Revolution, and brought Hungary back within limits tolerable to the Soviet Union. The five days of pitched battles left 25,000 Hungarians dead. After 1956 the Soviet Union practically disbanded the Hungarian Army and reinstituted a program of political indoctrination in the units that remained. In May 1957, unable to rely on Hungarian forces to maintain order, the Soviet Union increased its troop level in Hungary from two to four divisions and forced Hungary to sign a status-of-forces agreement, placing the Soviet military presence on a solid and permanent legal basis. The Soviet Army forces stationed in Hungary officially became the Southern Group of Forces

The events of 1956 in Poland and Hungary forced a Soviet re-evaluation of the reliability and roles of the NSWP countries in its alliance system. Before 1956 the Soviet leadership believed that the Stalinist policy of heavy political indoctrination and enforced Sovietization had transformed the national armies into reliable 342

Appendix C
instruments of the Soviet Union. However, the East European armies were still likely to remain loyal to national causes. Only one Hungarian Army unit fought beside the Soviet troops that put down the 1956 revolution. In both the Polish and the Hungarian military establishments, a basic loyalty to the national communist party regime was mixed with a strong desire for greater national sovereignty. With East Germany still a recent enemy and Poland and Hungary now suspect allies, the Soviet Union turned to Czechoslovakia as its most reliable junior partner in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Czechoslovakia became the Soviet Union's first proxy in the Third World when its military pilots trained Egyptian personnel to fly Soviet-built MiG fighter aircraft. The Soviet Union thereby established a pattern of shifting the weight of its reliance from one East European country to another in response to various crises.

The Post-1956 Period
After the very foundation of the Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe was shaken in 1956, Khrushchev sought to shore up the Soviet Union's position. Several developments made the task even more difficult. Between 1956 and 1962, the growing Soviet-Chinese dispute threatened to break up the Warsaw Pact. In 1962 Albania severed relations with the Soviet Union and terminated Soviet rights to the use of a valuable Mediterranean naval base on its Adriatic Sea coast. That same year, Albania ended its active participation in the Warsaw Pact and sided with the Chinese against the Soviets. Following the example of Yugoslavia in the late 1940s, Albania was able to resist Soviet pressures. Lacking a common border with Albania and having neither occupation troops nor overwhelming influence in that country, the Soviet Union was unable to use either persuasion or force to bring Albania back into the Warsaw Pact. Khrushchev used Warsaw Pact meetings to mobilize the political support of the Soviet Union's East European allies against China and Albania, as well as to reinforce its control of Eastern Europe and its claim to leadership of the communist world. More important, however, after Albania joined Yugoslavia and Hungary in the list of defections and near-defections from the Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe, the Soviets began to turn the Warsaw Pact into a tool for militarily preventing defections in the future. The Internal.Function of the Warsaw Pact Although Khrushchev invoked the terms of the Warsaw Pact as a justification for the Soviet invasion of Hungary, the action was in no sense a cooperative allied effort. In the early 1960s, however, 343

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the Soviets took steps to turn the alliance's Joint Armed Forces (JAF) into a multinational invasion force. In the future, an appeal to the Warsaw Pact's collective self-defense provisions and the participation of allied forces would put a multilateral cover over unilateral Soviet interventions to keep errant member states in the alliance and their communist parties in power. The Soviet Union sought to legitimize its future policing actions by presenting them as the product of joint Warsaw Pact decisions. In this way, the Soviets hoped to deflect the kind of direct international criticism they were subjected to after the inx asion of Hungary. However, such internal deployments were clearly contrary to the Warsaw Pact's rule of mutual noninterference in domestic affairs and conflicted with the alliance's declared purpose of collective self-defense against external aggression. To circumvent this semantic difficulty, the Soviets merely redefined external aggression to include any spontaneous anti-Soviet, anticommunist iprising in an allied state. Discarding domestic grievances as a possible cause, the Soviet Union declared that such outbreaks were a result of imperialist provocations and thereby constituted external aggression. In the 1960s, the Soviet Union began to prepare the Warsaw Pact for its internal function of keeping the NSWP member states within the alliance. The Soviet Union took a series of steps to transform the Warsaw Pact into its intra-alliance intervention force. Although it had previously worked with the East European military establishments on a bilateral basis, the Soviet Union started to integrate the national armies under the Warsaw Pact framework. Marshal of the Soviet Union Andrei Grechko, who became commander in chief of the alliance in 1960, was uniquely qualified to serve in his post. During World War II, he commanded a Soviet Army group that included significant Polish and Czechoslovak units. Beginning in 1961, Grechko made joint military exercises between Soviet forces and the allied national armies the primary focus of Warsaw Pact military activities. The Soviet Union arranged these joint exercises to prevent any NSWP member state from fully controlling its national army and to reduce the possibility that an East European regime could successfully resist Soviet domination and pursue independent policies. The Soviet-organized series of joint Warsaw Pact exercises was intended to prevent other East European national command authorities from following the example of Yugoslavia and Albania and adopting a territorial defense strategy. Developed in the Yugoslav and Albanian partisan struggles of World War II, territorial defense entailed a mobilization of the entire population for a prolonged guerrilla war against an intervening power. Under this


Appendix C
strategy, the national communist party leadership would maintain its integrity to direct the resistance, seek international support for the country's defense, and keep an invader from replacing it with a more compliant regime. Territorial defense deterred invasions by threatening considerable opposition and enabled Yugoslavia and Albania to assert their independence from the Soviet Union. By training and integrating the remaining allied armies in joint exercises for operations only within a multinational force, however, the Soviet Union reduced the ability of the other East European countries to conduct military actions independent of Soviet control or to hinder a Soviet invasion, as Poland and Hungary had done in October 1956. Large-scale multilateral exercises provided opportunities for Soviet officers to command troops of different nationalities and trained East European national units to take orders from the Warsaw Pact or Soviet command structure. Including Soviet troops

stationed in the NSWP countries and the western military districts
of the Soviet Union, joint maneuvers drilled Soviet Army forces for rapid, massive invasions of allied countries with the symbolic participation of NSWP units. Besides turning the allied armies into a multinational invasion force for controlling Eastern Europe, joint exercises also gave the Warsaw Pact armies greater capabilities for a coalition war against NATO. In the early 1960s, the Soviet Union modernized the NSWP armies with T-54 and T-55 tanks, selfpropelled artillery, short-range ballistic missiles (SRBMs) equipped with conventional warheads, and MiG-21 and Su-7 ground attack fighter aircraft. The Soviet Union completed the mechanization of East European infantry divisions, and these new motorized rifle divisions trained with the Soviet Army for combined arms combat in a nuclear environment. These changes greatly increased the military value and effectiveness of the NSWP forces. In the early 1960s, the Soviet Union gave the East European armies their first real supporting role in its European theater operations.

Romania and the Warsaw Pact
Ironically, at the very time that the Soviet Union gave the Warsaw Pact more substance and modernized its force structure, resentment of Soviet political, organizational, and military domination of the Warsaw Pact and the NSWP armies increased. There was considerable East European dissatisfaction with a Warsaw Pact hierarchy that placed a subordinate of the Soviet minister of defense over the East European defense ministers. The Soviets considered the national ministers of defense, with the rank of colonel general, equivalent only to Soviet military district commanders. The strongest 345

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objections to the subordinate status of the NSWP countries inside the Warsaw Pact came from the Communist Party of Romanian (Partidul Communist Roman) and its military leadership under Nicolae Ceausescu. The first indications of an independent Romanian course appeared while the Soviet Union was shoring up its hold on Eastern Europe through formal status-of-forces agreements with its allies. In 1958 Romania moved in the opposite direction by demanding the withdrawal from its territory of all Soviet troops, advisers, and the Soviet resident representative. To cover Soviet embarrassment, Khrushchev called this a unilateral troop reduction contributing to greater European security. Reducing its participation in Warsaw Pact activities considerably, Romania also refused to allow Soviet or NSWP forces, which could serve as Warsaw Pact intervention forces, to cross or conduct exercises on its territory. In the 1960s Romania demanded basic changes in the Warsaw Pact structure to give the East European member states a greater role in alliance decision making. At several PCC meetings, Romania proposed that the leading Warsaw Pact command positions, including its commander in chief, rotate among the top military leaders of each country. In response, the Soviet Union tried again to mollify its allies and deemphasize its control of the alliance by moving the Warsaw Pact military organization out of the Soviet General Staff and making it a distinct entity, albeit still within the Soviet Ministry of Defense. The Soviet Union also placed some joint exercises held on NSWP territory under the nominal command of the host country's minister of defense. However, Soviet Army commanders still conducted almost two-thirds of all Warsaw Pact maneuvers, and these concessions proved too little and too late. With the aim of ending Soviet domination and guarding against Soviet encroachments, Romania reasserted full national control over its armed forces and military policies in 1963 when, following the lead of Yugoslavia and Albania, it adopted a territorial defense strategy called "War of the Entire People." This nation-in-arms strategy entailed compulsory participation in civilian defense organizations, militias, and reserve and paramilitary forces, as well as rapid mobilization. The goal of Romania's strategy was to make any Soviet intervention prohibitively protracted and costly. Romania rejected any integration of Warsaw Pact forces that could undercut its ability to resist a Soviet invasion. For example, it ended its participation in Warsaw Pact joint exercises because multinational maneuvers required the Romanian Army to assign its forces to a non-Romanian command authority. Romania stopped 346

Appendix C
sending its army officers to Soviet military schools for higher cducation. When the Romanian military establishment and its educational institutions assumed these functions, training focused strictly on Romania's independent military strategy. Romania also terminated its regular exchange of intelligence with the Soviet Union and directed counterintelligence efforts against possible Soviet penetration of the Romanian Army. These steps combined to make it a truly national military establishment responsive only to domestic political authorities and ensured that it would defend the country's sovereignty. Romania's independent national defense policy helped to underwrite its assertion of greater policy autonomy. In the only Warsaw Pact body in which it continued to participate actively, the PCC, Romania found a forum to make its disagreements with the Soviet Union public, to frustrate Soviet plans, and to work to protect its new autonomy. The Soviet Union could not maintain the illusion of Warsaw Pact harmony when Romanian recalcitrance forced the PCC to adopt "coordinated" rather than unanimous decisions. Romania even held up PCC approval for several weeks of the appointment of Marshal of the Soviet Union Ivan Iakubovskii as Warsaw Pact commander in chief. However, Romania did not enjoy the relative geographical isolation from the Soviet Union that made Yugoslav and Albanian independence possible, and the Soviet Union would not tolerate another outright withdrawal from the Warsaw Pact. The Prague Spring In 1968 an acute crisis in the Soviet alliance system suddenly overwhelmed the slowly festering problem of Romania. The Prague Spring represented a more serious challenge than that posed by Romania because it occurred in an area more crucial to Soviet security. The domestic liberalization program of the Czechoslovak communist regime led by Alexander Dubek threatened to generate popular demands for similar changes in the other East European countries and even parts of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union believed it necessary to forestall the spread of liberalization and to assert its right to enforce the boundaries of ideological permissibility in Eastern Europe. However, domestic change in Czechoslovakia also began to affect defense and foreign policy, just as it had in Hungary in 1956, despite Dubek's declared intention to keep Czechoslovakia within the Warsaw Pact. This worrying development was an important factor in the Soviet decision -o invade Czechoslovakia in 1968-one that Western analysts have generally overlooked. 347

East Germany: A Country Study
The new political climate of the Prague Spring and the lifting of press censorship brought into the open a longstanding debate within the Czechoslovak military establishment over the nature of the Warsaw Pact and Czechoslovakia's membership in it. In the mid-1960s, this debate centered on Soviet domination of the NSWP countries and of the Warsaw Pact and its command structure. Czechoslovakia had supported Romania in its opposition to Soviet calls for greater military integration and backed its demands for a genuine East European role in alliance decision making at PCC meetings. In 1968 high-ranking Czechoslovak officers and staff members at the Klement Gottwald Military Academy began to discuss the need for a truly independent national defense strategy based on Czechoslovakia's national interests rather than the Soviet security interests that always prevailed in the Warsaw Pact. The fundamental premise of such an independent military policy was that an all-European collective security system, mutual nonaggression agreements among European states, the withdrawal of all troops from foreign countries, and a Central European nuclear-free zone could guarantee the country's security against outside aggression better than its membership in the Warsaw Pact. Although the Soviet Union had advocated these same arrangements in the 1950s, Czechoslovakia was clearly out of step with the Soviet line in 1968. Czechoslovakia threatened to complicate Soviet military strategy in Central Europe by becoming a neutral country dividing the Warsaw Pact into two parts along its front with NATO. The concepts underpinning this developing Czechoslovak national defense strategy were formalized in the Gottwald Academy Memorandum circulated to the general (main) staffs of the other Warsaw Pact armies. The Gottwald Memorandum received a favorable response from Poland, Hungary, and Romania. In a televised news conference, at the height of the 1968 crisis, the chief of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia's military department, Lieutenant General Viclav Prchlik, denounced the Warsaw Pact as an unequal alliance and declared that the Czechoslovak Army was prepared to defend the country's sovereignty by force, if necessary. In the end, the Soviet Union intervened to prevent the Czechoslovak Army from fully developing the military capabilities to implement its newly announced independent defense strategy, which could have guaranteed national independence in the political and economic spheres. The August 1968 invasion preempted the possibility of the Czechoslovak Army's mounting a credible deterrent against future Soviet interventions. The Soviet decision 348

Appendix C
in favor of intervention focused, in large measure, on ensuring its ability to maintain physical control of its wayward ally in the future. In contrast to its rapid, bloody suppression of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution, the Soviet Union engaged in a lengthy campaign of military coercion against Czechoslovakia. In 1968 the Soviet Union conducted more joint Warsaw Pact exercises than in any other year since the maneuvers began in the early 1960s. The Soviet Union used these exercises to mask preparations for, and threaten, a Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia that would occur unless Dubek complied with Soviet demands and abandoned his political liberalization program. Massive Warsaw Pact rear services and communications exercises in July and August enabled the Soviet General Staff to execute its plan for the invasion without alerting Western governments. Under the pretext of exercises, Soviet and NSWP divisions were brought up to full strength, reservists were called up, and civilian transportation resources were requisitioned. The cover that these exercises provided allowed the Soviet Union to deploy forces along Czechoslovakia's borders in Poland and East Germany and to demonstrate to the Czechoslovak leadership its readiness to intervene. On August 20, a force consisting of twenty-three Soviet Army divisions invaded Czechoslovakia. Token NSWP contingents, including one Hungarian, two East German, and two Polish divisions, along with one Bulgarian brigade, also took part in the invasion. In the wake of its invasion, the Soviet Union installed a more compliant communist party leadership and concluded a status-of-forces agreement with Czechoslovakia, which established a permanent Soviet presence in that country for the first time. Five Soviet Army di-isions remained in Czechoslovakia to protect the country from future "imperialist threats." These troops became the Central Group of Forces (CGF) and added to Soviet strength directly bordering NATO. The Czechoslovak Army, having failed to oppose the Soviet intervention and defend the country's sovereignty, suffered a tremendous loss of prestige after 1968. At Soviet direction, reliable Czechoslovak authorities conducted a purge and political re-education campaign in the Czechoslovak Army and cut its size. After 1968 the Soviet Union closed and reorganized the Klement Gottwald Military Academy. With its onetime junior partner now proven unreliable, the Soviet Union turned to Poland as its principal East European ally. The Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia showed the hollowness of the Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe in both its political and its military aspects. The Soviet Union did not convene the PCC to invoke the Warsaw Pact's terms during the 1968 crisis 349

East Germany: A Country Study
because a formal PCC session would have revealed a deep rift in the Soviet alliance and given Czechoslovakia an international platform from which it could have defended its reform program. The Soviet Union did not allow NSWP officers to direct the Warsaw Pact exercises that preceded the intervention in Czechoslovakia, and Soviet Army officers commanded all multinational exercises during the crisis. While the intervention force was mobilized and deployed under the Warsaw Pact's commander in chief, the Soviet General Staff transferred full operational command of the invasion to the commander in chief of the Soviet ground forces, Army General I.G. Pavlovskii. Despite the participation of numerous East European army units, the invasion of Czechoslovakia was not in any sense a multilateral action. The Soviet invasion force carried out all important operations on Czechoslovakia's territory. Moreover, the Soviet Union quickly withdrew all NSWP troops from Czechoslovakia to forestall the possibility of their ideological contamination. NSWP participation served primarily to make the invasion appear to be a multinational operation and to deflect direct international criticism of the Soviet Union. While the participation of four NSWP armies in the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia demonstrated considerable Warsaw Pact cohesion, the invasion also served to erode it. The invasion of Czechoslovakia proved that the Warsaw Pact's internal mission of keeping orthodox East European communist party regimes in power-and less orthodox ones in line-was more important than the external mission of defending its member states against external aggression. The Soviet Union was unable to conceal the fact that the alliance served as the ultimate mechanism for its control of Eastern Europe. Formulated in response to the crisis in Czechoslovakia, the so-called Brezhnev Doctrine declared that the East European countries had "limited" sovereignty to be exercised only as long as it did not damage the interests of the "socialist commonwealth" as a whole. Since the Soviet Union defined the interests of the "socialist commonwealth," it could force its NSWP allies to respect its overwhelming security interest in keeping Eastern Europe as its buffer zone. The Romanian leader, Ceau~escu, after refusing to contribute troops to the Soviet intervention force as the other East European countries had done, denounced the invasion of Czechoslovakia as a violation of intcrnational law and the Warsaw Pact's cardinal principle of mutual noninterference in internal affairs. Ceau~escu insisted that collective self-defense against external aggression was the only valid mission of the Warsaw Pact. Albania also objected to the Soviet invasion and indicated its disapproval by withdrawing


Appendix C
formally from the Warsaw Pact after six years of inactive membership.

The Organizational Structure of the Warsaw Pact
The Warsaw Pact administers both the political and the military activities of the Soviet alliance system in Eastern Europe. A series of changes beginning in 1969 gave the Warsaw Pact the structure it retained through the mid-1980s. Political Organization The general (first) secretaries of the communist and workers' parties and heads of state of the Warsaw Pact member states meet in the PCC (see table A, this Appendix). The PCC provides a formal point of contact for the Soviet and East European leaders in addition to less formal bilateral meetings and visits. As the highest decision-making body of the Warsaw Pact, the PCC is charged with assessing international developments that could affect the security of the allied states and warrant the execution of the Warsaw Pact's collective self-defense provisions. In practice, however, the Soviet Union has been unwilling to rely on the PCC to perform this function, fearing that Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Romania could use PCC meetings to oppose Soviet plans and policie-. The PCC is also the main center for coordinating the foreign policy activities of the Warsaw Pact countries. Since the late 1960s, when several member states began to use the alliance structure to confront the Soviets and assert more independent foreign policies, the Soviet Union has had to bargain and negotiate to gain support for its foreign policy within Warsaw Pact councils. In 1976 the PCC established the permanent Committee of Ministers of Foreign Affairs (CMFA) to regularize the previously ad hoc meetings of Soviet and East European representatives to the Warsaw Pact. Given the official task of preparing recommendations for and executing the decisions of the PCC, the CMFA and its permanent Joint Secretariat have provided the Soviet Union an additional point of contact to establish ,.consensus among its allies on contentious issues. Less formal meetings of the deputy ministers of foreign affairs of the Warsaw Pact member states represent another layer of alliance coordination. If alliance problems can be resolved at these working levels, they will not erupt into embarrassing disputes between the Soviet and East European leaders at PCC meetings. Military Organization The Warsaw Pact's military organization is larger and more active 351

East Germany: A Country Study Table A. Formal Meetings of the Warsaw Pact Agencies, 1956-87
Date 1956 January Place Prague Body PCC Final Communiqu6 Summary National People's Army of East Germany formed Proposed nonaggression pact with NATO. Removal of Soviet troops from Romania





1960 1961 1962 1963 1965

February March June July January July

-do-do-do-doWarsaw Bucharest

-do-do-do-do-do-doConvening a conference on collective security in Europe 1966 Strengthening peace and security in Europe

1968 1969

March -do-

Sofia Budapest

-do-doThe Committee of Ministers of I)efense (CMD) established. An appeal for a Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE). Improving the command and control, structure, and agencies of the Warsaw Pact Strengthening the command and control agencies of the Warsaw Pact Strengthening the defense capability of the Warsaw Pact



Military Council CMD




April May August October December

Budapest Sofia Moscow Varna East Berlin

Military Council CMI) PCC Military Council PCC Third World conflicts. Strengthening security in Europe Developing Warsaw Pact command, control, and communications systems The situation in Europe





May October

East Berlin Poland

Military Council -do-


Appendix C
Table A. -Continued
Date 1972 January February April October 1973 February May October 1974 February March April November Place Prague East Berlin Bucharest Minsk Warsaw Sofia Prague Bucharest Budapest Warsaw East Berlin Body PCC CMD Military Council -doCMD Military Council -doCMD Military Council PCC Military Council CMD Military Council -doCMD Improving training methods. Current activities of the directive agencies of the JAF Current activities of the directive agencies of the JAF Third World conflicts Final C€'omnuniqu6 Summary Peace, security, and cooperation in Europe The situation in Europe Interaction among the allied armies


January May October November

Moscow Warsaw Bucharest Prague


May Novemlftr

Kiev Bucharest

Military Council PCC Furthering d6tente in Europe. Committee of Ministers of Foreign Affairs (CMFA) established Current activities of the JAF's command and control agencies





May -doOctober November

Prague Moscow Sofia Budapest

Military Council CMD Military Council CM) Problems of peace, security, and ecoperation in Europe


East Germany. A Country Study Table A. -Continued
D ate

I.v Sofia Budlapest East Berlin Moscow East Berlin Warsaw Bu laptesi Bucharesi Wt~arsaws


Finlh (Cnnrnuniqu Sumiuar%


April May Ot tobir No\ ember Decemober

CMFA Military Countcil -dolPC( CMI) Military Council C NiFA Milit ar% Count it (CMDl CNIFA

The Belgrade CSCEF review mneeting

The stat us of- tte tc in Eu rope


April MaN. OtIobe r lDecembe-r -t--dto-

WI )cuite

19801 Nlav -do-


PCC Military Council -dtoCMFA CML Military Council -dtoCMFA CMI) Military Council -dtoCMFA

The status of th6tentc. The W'arsit"s Pau s tetvN-fitth anniscrsar\ lcttc. Sutmtmarized twe-ntNy-ie years of work to develop the allie-d armies

)ct ober -(tolDetcebcr 1981 April October D~ecember -do-do1982 October -do)-

Prague Warsaw Bucharest Solia Budapest Bucharest Moscow East Berlin Warsaw Moscow

Measures to strengthent peace andl security in Eu rope A p~roposal for a non-use-of-force pact with NATO


January -dtoApril -dtoOctober

Prague -dto-dtoBucharest Sofia

PCC M 1) CMFA Military Council CMFA


The situation in Europte


Appendix C
Table A. -Continued
i)a.e -doOctober December 1984 April -doOctober )ecember
Plat Body Final (:ontuniu' Stittnar%

East Berlin Lvov Solia Budapest Prague Sofia East Berlin

CMD Military Council CMI) CMFA Military Cou neil -doCMFA

The tense and dangerous situatio '
in Europe

The situation in Europe

The international situation cxaccrbated by the United States and NATO

-do1985 May October November December 1986 March April June October 1987 March April May

Budapest -doSolia East Berlin -doWarsaw -doBudapest Bucharest Moscow Minsk East Berlin

CM D Military Council PCC Military Council CMD CMFA Military Council PCC CMFA -doMilitary Council PCC The Reykjavik summit meeting

PCC-Political Consultative Committee 2 JAF-Joint Arrned Forces of the Warsaw Pact Member Siates ' NATO-North Atlantic Treaty Organization

than the alliance's political bodies. Several different organizations are responsible for implementing PCC directives on defense matters and developing the capabilities of the national armies that constitute'the JAF. However, the principal task of the military organizations is to link the East European armies to the Soviet armed forces. The alliance's military agencies coordinate the training and mobilization of East European national forces assigned to 355

East Germany: A Country Study
the Warsaw Pact. In turn, these forces can be deployed in accordance with Soviet military strategy against an NSWP country or NATO. Soviet control of the Warsaw Pact as a military alliance is scarcely veiled. The Warsaw Pact's JAF has no command structure, logistics network, air defense system, or operations directorate separate from the Soviet Ministry of Defense. The 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia demonstrated how easily control of the JAF could be transferred in wartime to the Soviet General Staff and Soviet field commanders. The dual roles of the Warsaw Pact commander in chief, who is a first deputy Soviet minister of defense, and the Warsaw Pact chief of staff, who is a first deputy chief of the Soviet General Staff, facilitate the transfer of Warsaw Pact forces to Soviet control. The subordination of the Warsaw Pact to the Soviet General Staff is also shown clearly in the Soviet military hierarchy. The chief of the Soviet General Staff is listed above the Warsaw Pact commander in chief in the Soviet order of precedence, even though both positions are filled by first deputy Soviet ministers of defense. Ironically, the first innovations in the Warsaw Pact's structure since 1955 came after the invasion of Czechoslovakia, which had clearly underlined Soviet control of the alliance. At the 1969 PCC session in Budapest, the Soviet Union agreed to cosmetic alterations in the Warsaw Pact designed to address East European complaints about Soviet domination of the alliance. These changes included the establishment of the formal Committee of Ministers of Defense (CMD) and the Military Council as well as the addition of more non-Soviet officers to the Joint Command and the Joint Staff (see fig. B, this Appendix). The CMD is the leading military body of the Warsaw Pact. In addition to the ministers of defense of the Warsaw Pact member states, the commander in chief and the chief of staff of the JAF are statutory members of the CMD. With its three seats on the CMD, the Soviet Union can exercise a working majority in the nine-member body with the votes of only two of its more loyal East European allies. The chairmanship of the CMD suppesedly rotates among the ministers of defense. In any event, the brief annual meetings of the CMD severely limit its work to pro forma pronouncements or narrow guidelines for the Joint Command, Military Council, and Joint Staff to follow. The Joint Command develops the overall training plan for joint Warsaw Pact exercises and for the national armies to promote the assimilation of Soviet equipment and tactics. Headed by the Warsaw Pact's commander in chief, the Joint Command is divided into distinct Soviet and East European tiers. The deputy commanders 356

----- m

Appendix C





t tw
MO ze-


East Germany: A Country Study
in chief include Soviet and East European officers. The Soviet officers serving as deputy commanders in chief are specifically responsible for coordinating the East European navies and air forces with the corresponding Soviet service branches. The East European deputy commanders in chief are the deputy ministers of defense of the NSWP countries. While providing formal NSWP representation in the Joint Command, the East European deputies also assist in the coordination of Soviet and non-Soviet forces. The commander in chief, deputy commanders in chief, and chief of staff of the JAF gather in the Military Council on a semiannual basis to plan and evaluate operational and combat training. With the Warsaw Pact's commander in chief acting as chairman, the sessions of the Military Council rotate among the capitals of the Warsaw Pact countries. The Joint Staff is the only standing Warsaw Pact military body and is the official executive organ of the CMD, commander in chief, and Military Council. As such, it performs the bulk of the Warsaw Pact's work in the military realm. Like the Joint Command, the Joint Staff has both Soviet and East European officers. These nonSoviet officers also serve as the principal link between the Soviet and East European armed forces. TheJoint Staff organizes all joint exercises and arranges multilateral meetings and contacts of Warsaw Pact military personnel at all levels. The PCC's establishment of official CMD meetings, the Military Council, and the bifurcation of the joint Command and Joint Staff allowed for greater formal East European representation, as well as more working-level positions for senior non-Soviet officers, in the alliance. Increased NSWP input into the alliance decisionmaking process ameliorated East European dissatisfaction with continued Soviet dominance of the Warsaw Pact and even facilitated the work of the JAF. However, a larger NSWP role in the alliance did not reduce actual Soviet control of the Warsaw Pact command structure. The 1969 PCC meeting also approved the formation of two more Warsaw Pact military bodies, the Military Scientific-Technical Council and the Technical Committee. These innovations in the Warsaw Pact structure represented a Soviet attempt to harness NSWP weapons and military equipment production, which had greatly increased during the 1960s. The Military Scientific-Technical Council assumed responsibility for directing armaments research and development within the Warsaw Pact, while the Technical Committee coordinated standardization. Comecon's Military-Industrial Commission supervised NSWP military production facilities (see Appendix B). 358

Appendix C After 1969 the Soviet Union insisted on tighter Warsaw Pact military integration as the price for greater NSWP participation in alliance decision making. Under the pretext of directing Warsaw Pact programs and activities aimed at integration, officers from the Soviet Ministry of Defense penetrated the East European armed forces. Meetings between senior officers from the Soviet and East European main political directorates allowed the Soviets to monitor the loyalty of the national military establishments. Joint Warsaw Pact exercises afforded ample opportunity for the evaluation and selection of reliable East European officers for promotion to command positions in the field, the national military hierarchies, and the joint Staff. Warsaw Pact military science conferences, including representatives from each NSWP general (main) staff, enabled the Soviets to check for signs that an East Europcan ally was formulating a national strategy or developing military capabilities beyond Soviet control. In 1973 the deputy ministers of foreign affairs signed the "Convention on the Capacities, Privileges, and Immunities of the Staff and Other Administrative Organs of the Joint Armed Forces of the Warsaw Pact Member States," which established the principle of extraterritoriality for alliance agencies, legally sanctioned the efforts of these Soviet officers to penetrate the Eatst European military establishments, and prevented any host government interference in their work. Moreover, the Warsaw Pact commander in chief still retained his resident representatives in the national ministries of defense as direct sources of information on the situation inside the allied armies.

The Warsaw Pact, 1970-87
The crisis in Czechoslovakia and Romania's recalcitrance gave a new dimension to the challenge facing the Soviet Union in Eastern
Europe. The Soviet Union's East European allies had learned that withdrawing from the Warsaw Pact and achieving independence from Soviet control were unrealistic goals, and they aimed instead at establishing a greater measure of autonomy within the alliance. Romania had successfully carved out a more independent position within the bounds of the Warsaw Pact. In doing so, it provided an example to the other East European countries of how to use the Warsaw Pact councils and committees to articulate positions contrary to Soviet interests. Beginning in the early 1970s, the East European allies formed intra-alliance coalitions in Warsaw Pact meetings to oppose the Soviet Union, defuse its pressure on any one NSWP member state, and delay or obstruct Soviet policies. The Soviets could no longer use the alliance to transmit their positions to, and receive an automatic endors,ment from, the 359

East Germany: A Country Study subordinate NSWP countries. While still far from genuine consultation, Warsaw Pact policy coordination between the Soviet Union and the East European countries in the 1970s was a step away from the blatant Soviet control of the alliance that had characterized the 1950s. East European opposition forced the Soviet Union to treat the Warsaw Pact as a forum for managing relations with its allies and bidding for their support on issues like dtente, the Third World, the Solidarity crisis in Poland, alliance burdensharing, and relations with NATO. Ditente In the late 1960s, the Soviet Union abandoned its earlier efforts to achieve the simultaneous dissolution of the two European military blocs and concentrated instead on legitimizing the territorial status quo in Europe. The Soviets asserted that the official EastWest agreements reached during the detente era "legally secured the most important political-territorial results of World War II." Under these arrangements, the Soviet Union allowed its East European allies to recognize West Germany's existence as a separate state. In return the West, and West Germany in particular, explicitly accepted the inviolability of all postwar borders in Eastern Europe and tacitly recognized Soviet control of the eastern half of both Germany and Europe. The Soviets claim the 1975 Helsinki Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), which ratified the existing political division of Europe, as a major victory for Soviet diplomacy and the realization of longstanding Soviet calls, issued through the PCC, for a general European conference on collective security. The consequences of detente, however, also posed a significant challenge to Soviet control of Eastern Europe. First, dtente caused a crisis in Soviet-East German relations. East Germany's leader, Walter Ulbricht, opposed improved relations with West Germany and, following Ceau~escu's tactics, used Warsaw Pact councils to attack the Soviet dtente policy openly. In the end, the Soviet Union removed Ulbricht from power, in 1971, and proceeded unhindered into d6tente with the West. Second, d6tente blurred the strict bipolarity of the cold war era, opened Eastern Europe to greater Western influence, and loosened Soviet control over its allies. The relaxation of East-West tensions in the 1970s reduced the level of threat perceived by the NSWP countries, along with their perceived need for Soviet protection, and eroded Warsaw Pact alliance cohesion. After the West formally accepted the territorial status quo in Europe, the Soviet Union was unable to point to the danger of "imperialist" attempts to overturn East European communist 360

Appendix C
party regimes to justify its demand for strict Warsaw Pact unity behind its leadership, as it had in earlier years. The Soviets resorted to occasional propaganda offensives, accusing West Germany of revanchism and aggressive intentions in Eastern Europe, to remind its allies of their ultimate dependence on Soviet protection and to reinforce the Warsaw Pact's cohesion against the attraction of good relations with the West. Despite these problems, the detente period witnessed relatively stable Soviet-East European relations within the Warsaw Pact. In the early 1970s, the Soviet Union greatly expanded military cooperation with the NSWP countries. The joint Warsaw Pact exercises, conducted in the 1970s, gave the Soviet allies their first real capability for offensive operations other than intra-bloc policing actions. The East European countries also began to take an active part in Soviet strategy in the Third World.

The Role of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Countries in the Third World
With Eastern Europe in a relatively quiescent phase, the Soviet Union began to build an informal alliance system in the Third World during the 1970s. In this undertaking the Soviets drew on their experiences in developing allies in Eastern Europe after 1945. Reflecting this continuity, the Soviet Union called its new Third World allies "people's democracies" and their armed forces "national liberation armies." The Soviets also drew on their East European resources directly by enlisting the Warsaw Pact allies as proxies to "enhance the role of socialism in world affairs," that is, to support Soviet interests in the Middle East and Africa. Since the late 1970s, the NSWP countries have been active mainly in Soviet-allied Angola, Congo, Ethiopia, Libya, Mozambique, the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen), and Syria. The Soviet Union employed its Warsaw Pact allies as surrogates primarily because their activities would minimize the need for direct Soviet involvement and obviate possible international criticism of Soviet actions in the Third World. Avowedly independent East European actions would be unlikely to precipitate or justify a response by the United States. The Soviet Union also counted on closer East European economic ties with Third World countries to alleviate some of Eastern Europe's financial problems. From the East European perspective, involvement in the Third World offered an opportunity for reduced reliance on the Soviet Union and for semiautonomous relations with other countries. In the 1970s, the East European allies followed the lead of Soviet diplomacy and signed treaties on friendship, cooperation, and mutual 361

East Germany: A Country Study assistance with most of the important Soviet Third World allies. These treaties established a "socialist division of labor" among the East European countries, in which each specialized in the provision of certain aspects of military or economic assistance to different Soviet Third World allies. The most important part of the treaties concerned military cooperation; the Soviets have openly acknowledged the important role of the East European allies in providing weapons to the "national armies of countries with socialist orientation." In the 1970s and 1980s, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, and East Germany were the principal Soviet proxies for arms transfers to the Third World. These NSWP countries supplied Soviet-manufactured equipment, spare parts, and training personnel to various Third World armies. The Soviet Union used these countries to transship weapons to the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam) in the early 1970s, Soviet-backed forces in the 1975 Angolan civil war, and Nicaragua in the 1980s. The Soviet Union also relied on East German advisers to set up armed militias, paramilitary police forces, and internal security and intelligence organizations for selected Third World allies. The Soviets considered this task especially important because an efficient security apparatus would be essential for suppressing opposition forces and keeping a ruling regime, allied to the Soviet Union, in power. In addition to on-site activities, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, and particularly East Germany trained Third World military and security personnel in Eastern Europe during the 1980s. During this period, the Soviet Union also relied on its East European allies to provide the bulk of Soviet bloc economic aid and credits to the countries of the Third World. Perhaps revealing their hesitancy about military activities outside the Warsaw Pact's European operational area, Hungary and Poland have confined their Third World involvement to commercial assistance. Both countries sent economic and administrative advisers to assist in the management of state-directed industrial enterprises in the Third World as part of a Soviet campaign to demonstrate the advantages of the "socialist path of development" to potential Third World allies. The Warsaw Pact has added no new member states in the more than thirty years of its existence. Even at the height of its Third World activities in the mid-to late 1970s, the Soviet Union did not offer Warsaw Pact membership to any of its important Third World allies. In 1986, after the United States bombed Libya in retaliation for its support of international terrorism, the Soviet Union was reported to have strongly discouraged Libyan interest in 362

Appendix C Warsaw Pact membership, expressed through one or more NSWP countries, and limited its support of Libya to bilateral consultations after the raid. Having continually accused the United States of attempting to extend NATO's sphere of activity beyond Europe, the Soviets did not want to open themselves to charges of broadening the Warsaw Pact. In any event, the Soviet Union would be unlikely to accept a noncommunist, non-European state into the Warsaw Pact. Moreover, the Soviets have already had considerable success in establishing strong allies throughout the world, outside their formal military alliance. Beginning in the late 1970s, mounting economic problems sharply curtailed the contribution of the East European allies to Soviet Third World activities. In the early 1980s, when turmoil in Poland reminded the Soviet Union that Eastern Europe remained its most valuable asset, the Third World became a somewhat less important object of Soviet attention.

The Solidarity Crisis
The rise of the independent trade union Solidarity shook the foundation of communist party rule in Poland and, consequently, Soviet control of a country the Soviet Union considers critical to its security and alliance system. Given Poland's central geographic position, this unrest threatened to isolate East Germany, sever vital lines of communication to Soviet forces deployed against NATO, and disrupt Soviet control in the rest of Eastern Europe. As in Czechoslovakia in 1968, the Soviet Union used the Warsaw Pact to carry out a campaign of military coercion against the Polish leadership. In 1980 and 1981, the Soviet Union conducted joint Warsaw Pact exercises with a higher frequency than at any time since 1968 to exert pressure on the Polish regime to solve the Solidarity problem. Under the cover that the exercises afforded, the Soviet Union mobilized and deployed its reserve and regular troops in the Belorussian Military District as a potential invasion force. In the West-81 and Union-81 exercises, Soviet forces practiced amphibious and airborne assault landings on the Baltic Sea coast of Poland. These maneuvers demonstrated a ready Soviet capability for intervention in Poland. In the midst of the Polish crisis, Warsaw Pact commander in chief Viktor Kulikov played a crucial role in intra-alliance diplomacy on behalf of the Soviet leadership. Kulikov maintained almost constant contact with the Polish leadership and conferred with the leaders of Bulgaria, East Germany, and Romania about a possible multilateral Warsaw Pact military action against Poland. In December 1981, Kulikov pressed Polish United Workers Party first 363

East Germany. A Country Study secretary Wojciech Jaruzelski to activate his contingency plan for declaring martial law with the warning that the Soviet Union was ready to intervene in the absence of quick action by Polish authorities. As it turned out, the Polish government instituted martial law and suppressed Solidarity just as the Soviet press was reporting that these steps were necessary to ensure that Poland could meet its Warsaw Pact commitment to the security of the other member states. From the Soviet perspective, the imposition of martial law by Polish internal security forces was the best possible outcome. Martial law made the suppression of Solidarity a strictly domestic affair and spared the Soviet Union the international criticism that an invasion would have generated. However, the extensive use of Polish paramilitary police and riot troops suggested that the Soviet Union could not count on the Polish Army to put down Polish workers. Moreover, while the Brezhnev Doctrine of using force to maintain the leading role of the communist party in society was upheld in Poland, it was not the Soviet Union that enforced it. Some question remains as to whether the Soviet Union could have used force successfully against Poland. An invasion would have damaged the Soviet Union's beneficial detente relatienship with Western Europe. Intervention would also have added to the evidence that the internal police function of the Warsaw Pact was more important than the putative external collective self-defense mission it had never exercised. Moreover, Romania, and conceivably Hungary, would have refused to contribute contingents to a multinational Warsaw Pact force intended to camouflage a Soviet invasion. Failure to gain the support of its allies would have represented a substantial embarrassment to the Soviet Union. In stark contrast to the unopposed intervention in Czechoslovakia, the Soviets probably also anticipated tenacious resistance from the general population and the Polish Army to any move against Poland. Finally, an invasion would have placed a weighty economic and military burden on the Soviet Union; the occupation and administration of Poland would have tied down at least ten Soviet Army divisions for an extended period of time. Nevertheless, had there been no other option, the Soviet Union would certainly have invaded Poland to eliminate Solidarity's challenge to communist party rule in that country. Although the Polish Army had previously played an important role in Soviet strategy for a coalition war against NATO, the Soviet Union had to revise its plans and estimates of Poland's reliability after 1981, and it turned to East Germany as its most reliable ally. In the early 1980s, because of its eager promotion of Soviet 364

Appendix C
interests in the Third World and its importance in Soviet military strate,, East Germany completed its transformation from defeated enemy and dependent ally into the premier junior partner of the Soviet Union. Ironically, East Germany's efficiency and loyalty have made the Soviet Union uncomfortable. Encroaching somewhat on the leading role of the Soviet Union in the Warsaw Pact, East Germany has been the only NSWP country to institute the rank of marshal, matching the highest Soviet Army rank and implying its equality with the Soviet Union.

The End of Dtente
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the West grew disenchanted with detente, which had failed to prevent Soviet advances in the Third World, the deployment of SS-20 intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBMs) aimed at West European targets, the invasion of Afghanistan, or the suppression of Solidarity. The Soviet Union used the renewal of East-West conflict as a justification for forcing its allies to close ranks within the Warsaw Pact. But restoring the alliance's cohesion and renewing its confrontation with Western Europe proved difficult after several years of good East-West relations. The East European countries had acquired a stake in maintaining detente for various reasons. In the early 1980s, internal Warsaw Pact disputes centered on relations with the West after detente, NSWP contributions to alliance defense spending, and the alliance's reaction to IRBM deployments by NATO. The resolution of these disputes produced significant changes in the Warsaw Pact as, for the first time, two or more NSWP countries simultaneously challenged Soviet military and foreign policy preferences within the alliance. In the PCC meetings of the late 1970s and early 1980s, Soviet and East European leaders of the Warsaw Pact debated about the threat emanating from NATO. When the Soviet Union argued that a new cold war loomed over Europe, the East European countries insisted that the improved European political climate of detente still prevailed. On several occasions, the Soviets had to compromise on the relative weight of these two alternatives in the language of PCC declarations. Although the Soviet Union succeeded in officially ending d6tente for the Warsaw Pact, it was unable to achieve significantly greater alliance cohesion or integration. Discussions of the "NATO threat" also played a large part in Warsaw Pact debates about an appropriate level of NSWP military expenditure. The Soviet Union used the 1978 PCC meeting to try to force its allies to match a scheduled 3-percent, long-term increase in the military budgets of the NATO countries. Although 365

East Germany: A Country Study the East European countries initially balked at this Soviet demand, they eventually agreed to the increase. However, only East Germany actually honored its pledge, and the Soviet Union failed to achieve its goal of increased NSWP military spendiig. The debate on alliance burden-sharing did not end in 1978. Beginning in the late 1970s, the Soviets carefully noted that one of the Warsaw Pact's most important functions was monitoring the "fraternal countries and the fulfillment of their duties in the joint defense of socialism." In 1983 Romania adopted a unilateral three-year freeze on its military budget at its 1982 level. In 1985 Ceau~escu frustrated the Soviet Union by calling for a unilateral Warsaw Pact reduction in arms expenditures, ostensibly to put pressure on NATO to follow its example. At the same time, Hungary opposed Soviet demands for increased spending, arguing instead for more rational use of existing resources. In the mid-1980s, East Germany was the only Soviet ally that continued to expand its military spending. The refusal of the NSWP countries to meet their Warsaw Pact financial obligations in the 1980s clearly indicated diminished alliance cohesion. The East European leaders argued that the costs of joint exercises, their support for Soviet Army garrisons, and the drain of conscription represented sufficient contributions to the alliance at a time of hardship in their domestic economies. In addition to providing access to bases and facilities opposite NATO, the East European communist regimes were also obligated to abide by Soviet foreign policy and security interests to earn a Soviet guarantee against domestic challenges to their continued rule. For its part, the Soviet Union paid a stiff price in terms of economic aid and subsidized trade with the NSWP countries to maintain its buffer zone in Eastern Europe. The issue of an appropriate Warsaw Pact response to NATO's 1983 deployment of American Pershing II and cruise missiles, matching the Soviet SS-20s, proved to be the most divisive one for the Soviet Union and its East European allies in the early and mid-1980s. After joining in a vociferous Soviet propaganda campaign against the deployment, the East European countries split with the Soviet Union over how to react when their "peace offensive" failed to forestall it. In 1983 East Germany, Hungary, and Romania indicated their intention to "limit the damage" to East-West ties that could have resulted from the deployment of NATO's new missiles. In doing so, these countries raised the possibility of an independent role for the smaller countries of both alliances in reducing conflicts between the two superpowers. In particular, East Germany sought to insulate 366

Appendix C
its profitable economic ties with West Germany, established through dtente, against the general deterioration in East-West political relations. While East Germany had always been the foremost proponent of "socialist internationalism," that is, strict adherence to Soviet foreign policy interests, its position on this issue caused a rift in the Warsaw Pact. In effect, East Germany asserted that the national interests of the East European countries did not coincide exactly with those of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia attacked the East German stand, accusing the improbable intra-bloc alliance of East Germany, Hungary, and Romania of undermining the class basis of Warsaw Pact foreign policy. The Soviet Union indicated that it would not permit its allies to become mediators between East and West. The Soviet Union forced East Germany to accept its "counterdeployments" of SS-21 and SS-23 SRBMs and compelled SED general secretary Erich Honecker to cancel his impending visit to West Germany. The Soviets thereby reaffirmed their right to determine the conditions under which the Warsaw Pact member states would conduct relations with the NATO countries. However, the Soviet Union also had to forego any meeting of the PCC in 1984 that might have allowed its recalcitrant allies to publicize their differences on this issue. As late as 1985, Soviet leaders still had not completely resolved the question of the proper connection between the national and international interests of the socialist countries. Some Sovict commentators adopted a conciliatory approach toward the East European position by stating that membership in the Warsaw Pact did not erase a country's specific national interests, which could be combined harmoniously with the common international interests of all the member states. Others, however, simply repeated the Brezhnev Doctrine and its stricture that a socialist state's sovereignty involves not only the right to independence but also a responsibility to the "socialist commonwealth" as a whole. The Problem of Romania in the 1970s and 1980s The 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia was, tangentially, a warning to Romania about its attempts to pursue genuine national independence. But Ceausescu, in addition to refusing to contribute Romanian troops to the Warsaw Pact invasion force, openly declared that Romania would resist any similar Soviet intervention on its territory. Romania pronounced that henceforth the Soviet Union represented its most likely national security threat. After 1968 the Romanian Army accelerated its efforts to make its independent defense strategy a credible deterrent to a possible Soviet 367

East Germany. A Country Study
invasion of the country. In the 1970s Romania also established stronger ties to the West, China, and the Third World. These diplomatic, economic, and military relations were intended to increase Romania's independence from the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union, while guaranteeing broad international support for Romania in the event ef a Soviet invasion. Throughout the 1970s, Romania continued to reject military integration within the Warsaw Pact framework and military intervention against other member states, while insisting on the right of the East European countries to resolve their internal problems without Soviet interference. Romanian objections to the Soviet line within the Warsaw Pact forced the Soviet Union to acknowledge the "possibility of differences arising in the views of the ruling communist parties on the assessment of some international developments." To obtain Romanian assent on several questions, the Soviet Union also had to substitute the milder formulation "international solidarity" for "socialist internationalism"-the code phrase for the subordination of East European national interests to Soviet interests-in PCC declarations. Pursuing a policy opposed to close alliance integration, Romania resisted Soviet domination of Warsaw Pact weapons production as a threat to its autonomy and refused to participate in the work of the Military ScientificTechnical Council and Technical Committee (see The Military Organization of the Warsaw Pact, this Appendix). Nevertheless, the Soviets havc insisted that a Romanian Army officer hold a position on the Technical Committee; his rank, however, is not appropriate to that level of responsibility. The Soviet claims are probably intended to obscure the fact that Romania does not actually engage in joint Warsaw Pact weapons production efforts. Despite continued Romanian defiance of Soviet policies in the Warsaw Pact during the 1980s, the Soviet Union successfully exploited Romania's severe economic problems and bribed Romania with energy supplies on several occasions to gain its assent, or at least silence, in the Warsaw Pact. Although Romania raised the price the Soviet Union had to pay to bring it into line, Romanian dependence on Soviet economic support may foreshadow Romania's transformation into a morc cooperative Warsaw Pact ally. Moreover, in 1985 Ceau~escu dismissed Minister of Foreign Affairs Stefan Andrei and Minister of Defense Constantin Oheanu, who helped establish the country's independent policies and would have opposed closer Romanian involvement with the Warsaw Pact.

The Renewal of the Alliance
In his first important task after becoming general secretary of 368

Appendix C
the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in March 1985, Mikhail S. Gorbachev organized a meeting of the East European leaders to renew the Warsaw Pact, which was due to expire that May after thirty years. There was little doubt that the Warsaw Pact member states would renew the alliance. However, there was some speculation that the Soviet Union might unilaterally dismantle its formal alliance structure to improve the Soviet image in tie West and put pressure on NATO to disband. The Soviets could still have relied on the network of bilateral treaties in Eastern Europe, which predated the formation of the Warsaw Pact and had been renewed regularly. Combined with later status-of-forces agreements, these treaties ensured that the essence of the Soviet alliance system and buffer zone in Eastern Europe would remain intact, regardless of the Warsaw Pact's status. But despite their utility, tie bilateral treaties could never substitute for the Warsaw Pact. Without a formal alliance, the Soviet Union would have to coordinate foreign policy and military integration with its East European allies through cumbersome bilateral arrangements. Without the Warsaw Pact, the Soviet Union would have no political equivalent of NATO for international negotiations like the CSCE and Mutual and Balanced Force Reduction talks, or for issuing its arms control pronouncements. The Soviet Union would also have to give up its equal status with the United States as an alliance leader. Although the Soviet and East European leaders debated the terms of the Warsaw Pact's renewal at their April 1985 meetingCeau~escu reportedly proposed that it be renewed for a shorter period-they did not change the original 1955 document, or the alliance's structure, in any way. The Soviets concluded that this outcome proved that the Warsaw Pact truly embodied the "fundamental long-term interests of the fraternal countries." The decision to leave the Warsaw Pact unamended was probably the easiest alternative for the Soviet Union and its allies; the alliance was renewed for another twenty-year term with an automatic tenyear extension. In the mid- to late 1980s, the fututui! of the Warsaw Pact hinged on Gorbachev's developing policy toward Eastern Europe. At the Twenty-seventh Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1986, Gorbachev acknowledged that differences existed among the Soviet allies and that it would be unrealistic to expect them to have identical views on all issues. There has been no firm indication, as yet, of whether Gorbachev would be willing to grant the Soviet allies more policy latitude or insist on tighter coordination with the Soviet Union. However, demonstrating a greater sensitivity to East European concerns than previous Soviet leaders, 369

East Germany: A Country Study
Gorbachev briefed the NSWP leaders in their own capitals after the 1985 Geneva and 1986 Reykjavik superpower summit meetings. According to many Western analysts, mounting economic difficulties in the late 1980s and the advanced age of trusted, longtime communist party leaders, like Gustav Husak in Czechoslovakia, Todor Zhivkov in Bulgaria, andJanos Kidir in Hungary, presented the danger of domestic turmoil and internal power struggles in the NSWP countries. These problems had the potential to monopolize Soviet attention and constrain Soviet global activities. But the Soviet Union could turn these potential crises into opportunities, using its economic leverage to pressure its East European allies to adhere more closely to Soviet positions or to influence the political succession process to ensure that a new generation of leaders in Eastern Europe would respect Soviet interests. Soviet insistence on greater NSWP military spending could fuel further economic deterioration, leading to political unrest and even threats to the integrity of the Soviet alliance system in several countries simultaneously. Conversely, limited, Soviet-sanctioned deviation from orthodox socialism could make the East European regimes more secure and reduce the Soviet burden of policing the Warsaw Pact.

Soviet Military Strategy and the Warsaw Pact
The Soviet ground forces constitute the bulk of the Warsaw Pact's military power. In 1987 the Soviet Union provided 73 of the 126 Warsaw Pact tank and motorized rifle divisions. Located in the Soviet Groups of Forces (SGFs) and four westernmost military districts of the Soviet Union, these Soviet Army divisions comprise the majority of the Warsaw Pact's combat-ready, full-strength units. Looking at the numbers of Soviet troops stationed in or near Eastern Europe, and the historical record, one could conclude that the Warsaw Pact is only a Soviet mechanism for organizing intraalliance interventions or maintaining control of Eastern Europe and does not significantly augment Soviet offensive power vis-a-vis NATO. Essentially a peacetime structure for NSWP training and mobilization, the Warsaw Pact has no independent role in wartime nor a military strategy distinct from Soviet military strategy. However, the individual NSWP armies play important parts in Soviet strategy for war, outside the formal context of the Warsaw Pact.

Soviet Military Strategy
The goal of Soviet military strategy in Europe is a quick victory over NATO in a nonnuclear war. The Soviet Union would attempt to defeat NATO decisively before its political and military command 370

Appendix C
structure could consult and decide how to respond to an attack. Under this strategy, success would hinge on inflicting a rapid succession of defeats on NATO to break its will to fight, knock some of its member states out of the war, and cause the collapse of the Western alliance. A quick victory would also keep the United States from escalating the conflict to the nuclear level by making retaliation against the Soviet Union futile. A rapid defeat of NATO would preempt the mobilization of its superior industrial and economic resources, as well as reinforcement from the United States, which would enable NATO to prevail in a longer war. Most significant, in a strictly conventional war the Soviet Union could conceivably capture its objective, the economic potential of Western Europe, relatively intact. In the 1970s, Soviet nuclear force developments increased the likelihood that a European war would remain on the conventional level. By matching the United States in intercontinental ballistic missiles and adding intermediate-range SS-20s to its nuclear forces, the Soviet Union undercut NATO's option to employ nuclear weapons to avoid defeat in a conventional war. After the United States neutralized the Soviet SS-20 IRBM advantage by deploying Pershing II and cruise missiles, the Soviet Union tried to use its so-called "counterdeployments" of SS-21 and SS-23 SRBMs to gain a nuclear war-fighting edge in the European theater. At the same time, the Soviet Union made NATO's dependence on nuclear weapons less tenable by issuing Warsaw Pact proposals for mutual no-first-use pledges and the establishment of nuclear-free zones. The Soviet plan for winning a conventional war quickly to preclude the possibility of a nuclear response by NATO and the United States was based on the deep-strike concept Soviet military theoreticians first proposed in the 1930s. After 1972 the Soviet Army put deep strike into practice in annual joint Warsaw Pact exercises, including "Brotherhood-in-Arms," "Union," "Friendship," "West," and "Shield." Deep strike would carry an attack behind the front lines of battle, far into NATO's rear areas. The Soviet Union would launch simultaneous missile and air strikes against vital NATO installations to disrupt or destroy the Western alliance's early warning surveillance systems, command and communications network, and nuclear delivery systems. Following this initial strike, the modern-day successor of the World War Il-era Soviet mobile group formations, generated out of the SGFs in Eastern Europe, would break through and encircle NATO's prepared defenses in order to isolate its forward forces from reinforcement. Consisting of two or more tank and motorized rifle divisions, 371

East Germany: A Country Study army-level mobile groups would also overrun important NATO objectives behind the front lines to facilitate the advance of Soviet follow-on forces, which would cross NSWP territory from the westernmost Soviet military districts. The Warsaw Pact countries provide forward bases, staging areas, and interior lines of communication for the Soviet Union against NATO. Peacetime access to East European territory under the Warsaw Pact framework has enabled the Soviet military to preposition troops, equipment, and supplies and to make reinforcement plans for wartime. In the 1970s, the Soviet Union increased road and rail capacity and built new airfields and pipelines in Eastern Europe. However, a quick Soviet victory through deep strike could be complicated by the fact that the attacking forces would have to achieve almost total surprise. Past Soviet mobilizations for relatively small actions in Czechoslovakia, Afghanistan, and Poland took an average of ninety days, while United States satellites observed the entire process. Moreover, the advance notification of large-scale troop movements, required under agreements made at the CSCE, would also complicate the concealment of mobilization. Yet the Soviet Union could disguise its offensive deployments against NATO as semiannual troop rotations in the GSFG, field exercises, or preparations for intervention against an ally. The Role of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Countries in Soviet Military Strategy The Warsaw Pact has no multilateral command or decisionmaking structure independent of the Soviet Army. NSWP forces would fight in Soviet, rather than joint Warsaw Pact, military operations. Soviet military writings about the alliances of World War I and World War II, as well as numerous recent works marking the thirtieth anniversary of the Warsaw Pact in 1985, reveal the current Soviet view of coalition warfare. The Warsaw Pact's chief of staff, A.I. Gribkov, has written that centralized strategic control, like that the Red Army exercised over the allied East European national units between 1943 and 1945, is valid today for the Warsaw Pact'sJAF (see The Organization of East European National Units, 1943-45, this Appendix). Soviet military historians indicate that the East European allies did not establish or direct operations on independent national fronts during World War II. The East European forces fought in units, at and below the army level, on Soviet fronts and under the Soviet command structure. The headquarters of the Soviet Supreme High Command exercised control over all allied units through the Soviet 372

Appendix C
General Staff. At the same time, the commanders in chief of the allied countries were attached to and "advised" the Soviet Supreme High Command. There were no special coalition bodies to make joint decisions on operational problems. A chart adapted from a Soviet journal indicates that the Soviet-directed alliance in World War II lacked a multilateral command structure independent of the Red Army's chain of command, an arrangement that also reflects the current situation in the Warsaw Pact (see fig. C, this Appendix). The Warsaw Pact's lack of a wartime command structure independent of the Soviet command structure is clear evidence of the subordination of the NSWP armies to the Soviet Army. Since the early 1960s, the Soviet Union has used the Warsaw Pact to prepare non-Soviet forces to take part in Soviet Army operations in the European theater of war. In wartime the Warsaw Pact commander in chief and chief of staff would transfer NSWP forces, mobilized and deployed under the Warsaw Pact aegis, to the operational control of the Soviet ground forces. After deployment the Soviet Union could employ NSWP armies, comprised of various East European divisions, on its fronts (see Glossary). In joint Warsaw Pact exercises, the Soviet Union has detached carefully selected, highly reliable East European units, at and below the division-level, from their national command structures. These specific contingents are trained for offensive operations within Soviet ground forces divisions. NSWP units, integrated in this manner, would fight as component parts of Soviet armies on Soviet fronts. The East European countries play specific roles in Soviet strategy against NATO based on their particular military capabilities. Poland has the largest and best NSWP air force that the Soviet Union could employ in a theater air offensive. Both Poland and East Germany have substantial naval forces that, in wartime, would revert to the command of the Soviet Baltic Fleet to render fire support for Soviet ground operations. These two Soviet allies also have amphibious forces that could carry out assault landings along the Baltic Sea coast into NATO's rear areas. While its mobile groups would penetrate deep into NATO territory, the Soviet Union would entrust the less reliable or capable East European armies, like those of Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Bulgaria, with a basically defensive mission. The East European countries are responsible for securing their territory, Soviet rear areas, and lines of communication. The air defense systems of all NSWP countries are linked directly into the Soviet Air Defense Forces command. This gives the Soviet Union an impiressive early warning network against NATO air attacks. 373

East Germany: A Country Study The Reliability of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Armies The Soviet Union counts on greater cooperation from its Warsaw Pact allies in a full-scale war with NATO than in intra-alliance policing actions. Nevertheless, the Soviets expect that a protracted war in Europe would strain the cohesion of the Warsaw Pact. This view may derive from the experience of World War II, in which Nazi Germany's weak alliance partners, Romania, Hungary, and Bulgaria, left the war early and eventually joined the Soviet side. A stalemate in a protracted European war could lead to unrest, endanger communist party control in Eastern Europe, and fracture the entire Soviet alliance system. NSWP reliability would also decline, requiring the Soviet Army to reassign its own forces to carry out unfulfilled NSWP functions or even to occupy a noncompliant ally's territory. Continuing Soviet concern over the combat reliability of its East European allies influences, to a great extent, the employment of NSWP forces under Soviet strategy. Soviet military leaders believe that the Warsaw Pact allies would be most likely to remain loyal if the Soviet Army engaged in a short, successful offensive against NATO, while deploying NSWP forces defensively. Under this scenario, the NSWP allies would absorb the brunt of NATO attacks against Soviet forces on East European territory. Fighting in Eastern Europe would reinforce the impression among the NSWP countries that their actions constituted a legitimate defense against outside attack. The Soviet Union would still have to be selective in deploying the allied armies offensively. For example, the Soviet Union would probably elect to pit East German forces against nonGerman NATO troops along the central front. Other NSWP forces that the Soviet Union employed offensively would probably be interspersed with Soviet units on Soviet fronts to increase their reliability. The Soviet Union would not establish separate East European national fronts against NATO. Independent NSWP fronts would force the Soviet Union to rely too heavily on its allies to perform well in wartime. Moreover, independent East European fronts could serve as the basis for a territorial defense strategy and successful resistance to future Soviet policing actions in Eastern Europe. Soviet concern over the reliability of its Warsaw Pact allies is also reflected in the alliance's military-technical policy, which is controlled by the Soviets. The Soviet Union has given the East European allies less modern, though still effective, weapons and equipment to keep their armies several steps behind the Soviet Army. The Soviets cannot modernize the East European armies without concomitantly improving their capability to resist Soviet intervention. 374

Appendix C






> >.



East Germany. A Country Study

Military Technology and the Warsaw Pact
As a result of its preponderance in the alliance, the Soviet Union has imposed a level of standardization in the Warsaw Pact that NATO cannot match. Standardization in NATO focuses primarily on the compatibility of ammunition and communications equipment among national armies. By contrast, the Soviet concept of standardization involves a broad complex of measures aimed at achieving "unified strategic views on the general character of a future war and the capabilities for conducting it." The Soviet Union uses the Warsaw Pact framework to bring its allies into line with its view of strategy, operations, tactics, organizational structure, service regulations, field manuals, documents, staff procedures, and maintenance and supply activities. The Weapons and Equipment of the Non-Soviet Warsaw Pact Armies By the 19 80s, the Soviet Union had achieved a degree of technical interoperability among the allied armies that some observers would consider to be a significant military advantage over NATO. However, the Soviet allies had weapons and equipment that were both outdated and insufficient in number. As one Western analyst has pointed out, the NSWP armies remain fully one generation behind the Soviet Union in their inventories of modern equipment and weapons systems and well below Soviet norms in force structure quantities. Although T-64 and T-72 tanks had become standard and modern infantry combat vehicles, including the BMP- 1, comprised two-thirds of the armored infantry vehicles in Soviet Army units deployed in Eastern Europe, the NSWP armies still relied primarily on older T-54 and T-55 tanks and domestically produced versions of Soviet BTR-50 and BTR-60 armored personnel carriers. The East European air forces did not receive the MiG-23, first built in 1971, until the late 1970s, and they still did not have the most modern Soviet ground attack fighter-bombers, like the MiG-27 and Su-24, in the mid- to late 1980s. These deficiencies called into question NSWP capabilities for joining in Soviet offensive operations against NATO and indicated primarily a reararea role for the NSWP armies in Soviet strategy. Within the Warsaw Pact, the Soviet Union decides which of the allies receive the most up-to-date weapons. Beginning in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Soviet Union provided the strategically located Northern Tier countries, East Germany and Poland especially, with greater quantities of advanced armaments. By contrast, the less important Southern Tier, consisting of Hungary, Bulgaria, 376






The major Warsaw Pact maneuvers oJ 1980, called "Brotherhood-in-Arms 80, " took place in East Germany Courtesy United Press International


East Germany: A Country Study and Romania, received used equipment that was being replaced in Soviet or Northern Tier forces. In the mid-1970s, overall NSWP force development slowed suddenly as the Soviet Union became more interested in selling arms to earn hard currency aid gain greater influence in the Third World, particularly in the oil-rich Arab states of the Middle East. At the same time, growing economic problems in Eastern Europe made many Third World countries look like better customers for Soviet arms sales. Between 1974 and 1978, the Soviet Union sent the equivalent of US$18.5 million of a total US$27 million in arms transfers outside the Warsaw Pact. Moreover, massive Soviet efforts to replace heavy Arab equipment losses in the 1973 war against Israel and the 1982 SyrianIsraeli air war over Lebanon came largely at the expense of modernization for the East European allies. In the late 1980s, the NSWP countries clearly resented the fact that some Soviet Third World allies, including Algeria, Libya, and Syria, had taken delivery of the newest Soviet weapons systems, such as the MiG-25, not yet in their own inventories. The Soviet Union probably looked at a complete modernization program for the NSWP armies as unnecessary and prohibitively costly fbr either it or its allies to undertake. Coordination of Arms Production The Soviet Union claims the right to play the leading role in the Warsaw Pact on the basis of its scientific, technical, and economic preponderance in the alliance. The Soviet Union also acknowledges its duty to cooperate with the NSWP countries by sharing military-technical information and developing their local defense industries. This cooperation, however, amounts to Soviet control over the supply of major weapons systems and is an important aspect of Soviet domination of the Warsaw Pact allies. Warsaw Pact military-technical cooperation prevents the NSWP countries from adopting autonomous policies or otherwise defying Soviet interests through a national defense capability based on domestic arms production. In discussions of the United States and NATO, the Soviets acknowledge that standardization and control of arms purchases are effective in increasing the influence of the leading member of an alliance over its smaller partners. In the same way, Soviet arms supplies to Eastern Europe have made the NSWP military establishments more dependent on the Soviet Union. To deny its allies the military capability to successfully resist a Soviet invasion, the Soviet Union does not allow the NSWP countries to produce sufficient quantities or more than a few kinds of weapons for their national armies. 378

Appendix C
Romania is the only Warsaw Pact country that has escaped Soviet military-technical domination. In the late 1960s, Romania recognized the danger of depending on the Soviet Union as its sole source of military equipment and weapons. As a result, Romania initiated heavy domestic production of relatively low-technology infantry weapons and began to seek non-Soviet sources for more advanced armaments. Romania has produced British transport aircraft, Chinese fast-attack boats, and French helicopters under various coproduction and licensing arrangements. Romania has also produced a fighter-bomber jointly with Yugoslavia. However, Romania still remains backward in its military technology because both the Soviet Union and Western countries are reluctant to transfer their most modern weapons to it. Each side must assume that any technology given to Romania could end up in enemy hands. Apart from Romania, the Soviet Union benefits from the limited military production of its East European allies. It has organized an efficient division of labor among the NSWP countries in this area. Czechoslovakia and East Germany, in particular, are heavily industrialized and probably surpass the Soviet Union in their hightechnology capabilities. The Northern Tier countries produce some Soviet heavy weapons, including older tanks, artillery, and infantry combat vehicles on license. However, the Soviet Union generally restricts its allies to the production of a relatively narrow range of military equipment, including small arms, munitions, communications, radar, optical, and other precision instruments and various components and parts for larger Soviet-designed weapons systems.

The 1980s have witnessed a dramatic increase in the amount of secondary source material published about the Warsaw Pact. The works of Alex Alexiev, Andrzej Korbonski, and Condoleezza Rice, as well as various Soviet writers, provide a complete picture of the Soviet alliance system and the East European military establishments before the formation of the Warsaw Pact. William J. Lewis's The Warsaw Pact: Arms, Doctrine, and Strategy is a very useful reference work with considerable information on the establishment of the Warsaw Pact and the armies of its member states. The works of Malcolm Mackintosh, a long-time observer of the Warsaw Pact, cover the changes in the Warsaw Pact's organizational structure and functions through the years. Christopher D. Jones's Soviet Influence in Eastern Europe. PoliticalAutonomy and the Warsaw Pact and subsequent articles provide a coherent interpretation of the Soviet 379

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Union's use of the Warsaw Pact to control its East European allies. In "The Warsaw Pact at 25," Dale R. Herspring examines intraalliance politics in the PCC and East European attempts to reduce Soviet domination of the Warsaw Pact. Soviet military journals are the best source for insights into the East European role in Soviet military strategy. Daniel N. Nelson and Ivan Volgyes analyze East European reliability in the Warsaw Pact. Nelson takes a quantitative approach to this ephemeral topic. By contrast, Volgyes uses a historical and political framework to draw his conclusions on the reliability issue. The works of Richard C. Martin and Daniel S. Papp present thorough discussions of Soviet policies on arming and equipping the NSWP allies. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)


Chapter 1
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